Tuesday, January 18, 2022

The July 2021 outbreak among the vaccinated

Although the breakthrough infections among the vaccinated were reported, the Provincetown, Massachusetts, mini epidemic in July 2021 was the first big one I heard about. (And haven't heard of another one.) Over a thousand people developed Covid, and over 900 of them were vaccinated. This article in CDC's January 2022, Emerging Infectious Diseases, "Multistate Outbreak of SARS-CoV-2 Infections, Including Vaccine Breakthrough Infections, Associated with Large Public Gatherings, United States" https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/eid/article/28/1/21-2220_article? is an interesting description of the investigation which was a major warning that vaccines might protect from death or serious illness, but not from getting or transmitting the disease. There is no comment in this article that P-Town is mecca for the LGBTQ community. Special guides are printed to promote this. I can't even link to some of the articles about the activities. Even the titles were pornographic.  We visited there in the late 1970s and it was true then. In this discussion there's no mention of the immune compromised state of untreated or controlled HIV or whether the drugs given to gay men for long term treatment of AIDS might affect the efficacy of the vaccines. I know there is research on this--I saw it in Lancet. Also, perhaps it was the serial intimacy and not the "large gathering" that was the problem? Masks, which are recommended for vaccinated people in this discussion, won't help with that. 

The main author, Radhika Gharpure, concludes that with all this data, "major epidemiologic QUESTIONS about BREAKTHROUGH INFECTIONS, such as the comparative infectiousness of fully vaccinated and non–fully vaccinated persons, duration of viral shedding, and duration of vaccine-derived immunity, REMAIN." The obvious question probably couldn't be pointed out without damaging her career.

Rolling Stone did an anecdotal account of those who were in P-Town and how the gay community stepped up to alert others, but it too seemed to suggest more masking as the solution to a terrible infection rate.

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