Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) highlighted a Cleveland Clinic study on Tuesday, which showed no difference in coronavirus reinfection rates among unvaccinated people who already had the coronavirus and vaccinated people who previously fell ill with the virus.
“Great news! Cleveland clinic study of 52,238 employees shows unvaccinated people who have had COVID 19 have no difference in re-infection rate than people who had COVID 19 and who took the vaccine,” Paul said, citing the study, adding, “This information frees up millions of doses of vaccines for those not yet infected in places with vaccine shortages like India”:
This information frees up millions of doses of vaccines for those not yet infected in places with vaccine shortages like India.https://t.co/V5EOqZ1CPm
— Senator Rand Paul (@RandPaul) June 8, 2021
According to the study, “individuals with previous SARS-CoV-2 infection do not get additional benefits from vaccination, indicating that COVID-19 vaccines should be prioritized to individuals without prior infection,” Dr. Sanchari Sinha Dutta, Ph.D., writing for News Medical, said, providing a summary of the study.
The study is based on 52,238 Cleveland Clinic employees. The results found that the infection occurred “almost exclusively in participants who were not previously infected and were not vaccinated.”
A positive RT-PCR test was considered to define SARS-CoV-2 infection. The participants received two doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine at an interval of 28 days. A participant was considered vaccinated after 14 days of receiving the 2nd vaccine dose. Similarly, a participant who tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 at least 42 days before the vaccination initiation was considered previously infected.
Of all enrolled participants, 5% had previous SARS-CoV-2 infection. Compared to 59% of non-infected participants, only 47% of previously infected participants were vaccinated by the end of the study. About 63% of all vaccinated participants received the Moderna vaccine.
Interestingly, no significant difference in COVID-19 incidence was observed between previously infected and currently unvaccinated participants, previously infected and currently vaccinated participants, and previously uninfected and currently vaccinated participants.
Notably, not one of the infections stemmed from previously infected individuals, whether they received the vaccine or not.
“With further statistical analysis, it was observed that the COVID-19 vaccination significantly reduced the risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection in previously uninfected participants but not in previously infected participants,” the article reads.
The study comes as the Biden administration ramps up efforts to get at least 70 percent of the U.S. population vaccinated by the Fourth of July.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) June 8 data, about 171 million people in the country have received at least one dose of a vaccine, representing 51.7 percent of the population.