Tens of thousands of COVID-19 deaths in the past four months could have been prevented if people had been vaccinated, find a new analysis.
Researchers at the Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) found that 90,000 virus-related deaths since June 2021 — while the vaccine was widely available — were avoidable.
More than half, nearly 50,000, of these preventable deaths occurred in September and 24,600 in August.
Researchers want health officials to do more to reach the remaining 70 million unvaccinated Americans, convincing them to take the injections to protect themselves.
A KFF analysis shows that more than 90,000 deaths in the US between June and September 2021 – 80% of total deaths – could have been prevented by the COVID-19 vaccines
The researchers, who published their findings Wednesday as part of the Peterson-KFF Health System Tracker, used official death data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for their analysis.
dr. Krutika Amin, associate director of the tracker and one of the authors of the study, told DailyMail.com that her team looked at the total number of reported Covid deaths in the four months from June to September 2021.
They ruled out deaths resulting from so-called “breakthrough” infections, which occur when fully vaccinated people contract the virus.
Then the team took the remaining deaths and applied the vaccines’ reported 91 percent effectiveness to prevent death from the virus.
In all, they found 91,100 deaths in the US that could have been prevented if those people had been fully vaccinated.
In that four-month period, 102,469 Americans died from the virus, meaning 89 percent of U.S. deaths over the period were preventable, according to the KFF analysis.
Another analysis by KFF finds that unvaccinated Americans also cost $5.7 billion in avoidable hospital bills from June to August.
Amin believes health officials should try to pass these numbers on to the remaining unvaccinated people, letting them know the risk they are taking by not getting stung.
“I think there are still ways for people to go out and reach people who haven’t been vaccinated yet by continuing to educate them about how effective the vaccines are, [and that] the vast majority of these deaths as well as serious illnesses and hospitalizations are among unvaccinated people,” she told DailyMail.com.
Currently, in the US, anyone 12 years of age or older is eligible for at least one of the COVID-19 vaccines.
The CDC reports that 76.6 percent of eligible Americans have received at least one shot of a COVID-19 vaccine and 66 percent have been fully vaccinated.
Cases and deaths are currently on the rise again in the US, with the number of cases nearly halved from 175,000 new cases per day in mid-September to about 90,000 per day currently.
Deaths have also fallen by about 15 percent, from about 2,000 deaths a day in late September to 1,700 deaths a day in early October.
While things are moving in the right direction, due to the changing nature of the virus and the constant change of local Covid regulations across the country, KFF cannot predict what will happen in the future.
“Because Covid’s business has changed over time with the different variants, how many people are getting vaccinated and other factors like states and local governments opening things up… we have no forecast of what will happen in the future” , says Amina. said.
COVID-19 emerged as the second leading cause of death for Americans in September, killing nearly 1,700 people each day. Heart disease alone killed more Americans
Cases spiked around this time of year last year, setting the table for a massive post-holiday COVID-19 outbreak, which is still the pandemic’s biggest wave.
However, cases are going the other way this time, and with more than half of Americans vaccinated, there’s a chance this holiday season will be safer.
The KFF report also found that COVID-19 was the second leading cause of death for all Americans in the month of September — killing 1,693 people every day — surpassing cancer.
Heart disease alone, which has consistently been the leading cause of death for Americans, was a bigger killer than Covid last month with 2,000 people dying from the condition every day.
The virus was in the top seven causes of death of each age group last month.