COVID-19 outbreak at nursing home where 95% residents were vaccinated led to 17 cases – but only death was person who had not received their shots
- A French nursing home where 95% of residents were fully vaccinated experienced a 17-case COVID-19 outbreak in January and February 2021
- Eight people suffered severe cases, two were hospitalized and one unvaccinated person died from the virus
- Researchers believe breakthrough cases are possible but the vaccine is effective at preventing hospitalization or death
- Patients had the Alpha variant, and study was conducted before the Delta variant became dominant in France and across the world
A nursing home where almost every resident was fully vaccinated suffered a COVID-19 outbreak, though damage from the virus was limited due to the shots, a new study finds.
A French research team, led by scientists from Hôpital Charles Foix in Ivry-sur-Seine, investigated a 17-case outbreak at a nursing home in Biscarrosse, France – 167 miles west of Toulouse – from January and February 2021.
The facility houses 74 seniors, of which 70 were fully vaccinated – or 95 percent of residents – and two were at least partially vaccinated.
Only two of those living at the nursing home were unvaccinated, and one of them was the only person to die from the virus.
There were also only two hospitalizations out of all who contracted COVID-19.
The researchers believe their investigation shows that fully vaccinated people can contract Covid, but even the elderly – who are among the most vulnerable to the virus – can recover with little complications if they are vaccinated.
Seventeen cases of COVID-19 were tied to an outbreak at a nursing home in France that had fully vaccinated more than 90% of residents. Despite the population being vulnerable to the virus, only one death occurred and it was an unvaccinated resident. Pictured: An elderly Australian man is tested for COVID-19 in Melbourne on July 2
The nursing home outbreak began after a resident contracted the virus from a visitor who was positive for Covid, according to the study published in JAMA Network Open.
The first patient tested positive after the visitor also tested for the virus, and then two days later began to exhibit symptoms.
In total, 14 fully vaccinated residents, two partially vaccinated residents and one unvaccinated person ended up contracting the virus.
Each person was discovered to have contracted the Alpha variant, the Covid mutation that was identified in England in September 2020.
Of the 17 patients, eight developed what the researchers categorized as a ‘severe disease’, including the two hospitalizations and one death.
‘This cohort study’s findings suggest that an outbreak of COVID-19 can occur among fully vaccinated NH residents,’ the researchers wrote.
‘The study found evidence of transmission among vaccinated residents, but few individuals who were infected developed severe disease and one patient, who was unvaccinated, died. ‘
The report confirms what many scientists believe about the virus and vaccination.
Fully vaccinated people are less likely to contract the virus, but still can and could even spread Covid in some cases.
The vaccine is effective at preventing hospitalization and death, though, which it did for residents in the French nursing home.
Exact data on breakthrough cases are not kept and every state reports them differently, so it is impossible to know what percent of cases in the U.S. are among fully vaccinated people.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stopped reporting full data on breakthrough cases in May, and only reports those that end in hospitalization and deaths.
Breakthrough cases account for a small share of overall hospitalizations and deaths in every state, however.
It’s worth noting that the French research comes from a time before the Delta variant became dominant in the world.
Delta was first detected towards the end of 2020, but did not create its first massive outbreak until it caused case spikes across India in May.
The variant then quickly spread across the world, and is now the dominant strain in many countries across the world – including the U.S. and France.
Scientists believe the variant has an increased ability to cause breakthrough infections among vaccinated people, and vaccinated people also have the same ability to spread the virus as the unvaccinated.