Despite vaccination records, coronavirus infections continue to rise
Holiday celebrations and travel could increase COVID-19 infections.
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On Wednesday, Dec. 8, the number of Americans fully vaccinated against COVID-19 reached 200 million people. However, this number is discouraging amid a rash of cases and hospitalizations during the holiday season that has affected not only North America but also several countries in Europe.
New cases in the country have jumped from an average of nearly 95,000 to 119,000 in one month, and hospitalizations are up 25% from last month, Huffpost reported.
In terms of fatalities, there are about 1,600 fewer deaths per day, almost the same as in the month of October when infections peaked.
According to some specialists, the total number of deaths in the United States less than two years after the crisis began, could reach the heartbreaking figure of 800,000 in a matter of days.
So far, about 48 million people have received the booster dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. White House officials noted that 12.5 million vaccines were administered last week, the highest weekly total since May.
Moderna is better than Pfizer
On vaccines, a Harvard University study published this week in the New England Journal of Medicine analyzed the two leading coronavirus vaccines based on messenger RNA — Pfizer and Moderna.
According to the study result, Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine has a slightly lower occurrence of positive breakthrough cases.
The researchers analyzed results over a 24-week period. Over this period, the alpha and delta variants were predominant.
"This large-scale study allowed us to detect subtle differences between these two highly effective vaccines. While the differences identified in estimated risk were small on the absolute scale, they may be significant for larger decision-making bodies, such as health care systems and higher-level organizations," explained Barbra Dickerman, one of the authors and a researcher in the Department of Epidemiology at Harvard Chan School.