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York Region's COVID-19 cases in vaccinated begin to outpace unvaccinated

Public health unit says the data is misleading due to the disparity of vaccinated versus unvaccinated people, with 82.9 per cent of eligible residents fully vaccinated
COVID-19 Vaccine 6
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New COVID-19 cases in vaccinated individuals aged 12 and older have begun to outpace cases in unvaccinated people in York Region, according to the public health unit's dashboard.

York Region Public Health said vaccination trends are to account for the change in the daily statistic. 

A slim majority of new cases in the vaccine-eligible population were in vaccinated people for the first time last week. In York Region, 50.2 per cent of cases in the 12+ population were in vaccinated people over the last seven days, as of Oct. 8.

The percentage of new cases in unvaccinated versus vaccinated individuals has been steadily inching downwards in recent weeks.

But the region said this is misleading data due to the disparity of vaccinated versus unvaccinated people, with 82.9 per cent of eligible residents in the region fully vaccinated.

“In York Region, there are far more vaccinated residents than unvaccinated residents," director of corporate communications Patrick Casey said. "As vaccination coverage increases and there are fewer unvaccinated residents, we expect to see a higher proportion of cases who are vaccinated." 

Ontario as a whole still has more daily unvaccinated cases compared to vaccinated ones. Of the 535 cases reported for Oct. 10, 319 were unvaccinated (59 per cent), compared to 29 partially vaccinated, 147 vaccinated and 40 vaccination status unknown. However, Ontario does not exclude the 0-11 population from the figure, which is not yet eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine. 

The region said the unvaccinated age 12+ cases in the last seven days figure  is “not the most appropriate metric for understanding the likelihood of being infected with COVID-19.” As such, it said it would add cases per 100,000 to its data dashboard this week to account for the population discrepancy between vaccinated and unvaccinated populations.

“The proportion of unvaccinated cases among the eligible population in the last seven days is expected to decrease over time, given vaccination coverage rates across York Region have increased over time," Casey said. 

Ontario had 18.48 cases per 100,000 in unvaccinated people Oct. 10, compared to 1.42 in the partially vaccinated and 1.20 in the fully vaccinated.

“Based on our preliminary analyses of York Region data, the likelihood of being infected with COVID-19 remains approximately 10 times higher for unvaccinated individuals compared to vaccinated individuals,” Casey said. 

Though there is still a chance to catch COVID-19 if vaccinated, Casey said vaccines remain the best protection against the virus and avoiding hospitalization or death from it. 

Most COVID-19 cases in hospitals or ICU are still unvaccinated. As of Oct. 10, 94 COVID-19 hospitalizations in Ontario were in unvaccinated people, compared to 12 partially vaccinated and 39 fully vaccinated. As for people in ICU due to COVID-19, there are 68 unvaccinated cases, compared to seven partially vaccinated and 14 fully vaccinated. 



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Joseph Quigley

About the Author: Joseph Quigley

Joseph is the municipal reporter for NewmarketToday.
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