May 18, 2022 - News

Florida's preventable COVID deaths

Vaccine-preventable COVID-19 deaths per 1 million adults
Data: Brown School of Public Health; Map: Thomas Oide/Axios

Vaccinations could have prevented 56% of Florida's COVID-19 deaths between January 2021 and April 2022. That's based on a new analysis by Brown University's School of Public Health.

Driving the news: Researchers created a model illustrating what could have happened if 100% of adult Americans got fully vaccinated and boosted after the shots became available.

  • The study used data from the CDC and the New York Times while considering variables such as supply and vaccine effectiveness over time.

The big picture: Nationwide, COVID vaccines could have prevented roughly 319,000 deaths, nearly half of those occurring during the study's time frame, Axios' Tina Reed reports.

  • The news comes as the country's overall recorded death toll hit 1 million people on Monday, per the AP. That includes more than 74,000 in Florida.

Zoom in: Florida ranks No. 13 in the country, with 1.69 vaccine-preventable deaths per 1 million people.

  • 77% of Florida adults are fully vaccinated but just 42% have received a booster shot.

What they're saying: "The vaccine rollout has been both a remarkable success and a remarkable failure," Stefanie Friedhoff, one of the analysis' authors, told NPR.

  • While the U.S. was able to get a large vaccine supply rolled out quickly, the shots are useless if they're not going into arms, she said.

The bottom line: As COVID immunity wanes over time and the virus continues to mutate, vaccines and boosters remain our best tools for fighting off new waves of infections.

Bonus: Listen to The Daily's somber remembrance as the U.S. passed the grim milestone.

U.S. COVID-19 deaths by age group
Data: CDC; Chart: Axios Visuals

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