The mRNA COVID-19 vaccines from Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna have shown to reduce the risk of coronavirus infection by 91% for fully vaccinated people, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

What the new CDC study said:

  • The study said that vaccination makes COVID-19 illness milder and shorter for the few vaccinated people who still got COVID-19, according to the CDC.
  • The study’s findings “suggest that fully or partially vaccinated people who got COVID-19 might be less likely to spread the virus to others,” according to the CDC.
  • Per the CDC, the “findings indicated that those who became infected after being fully or partially vaccinated were more likely to have a milder and shorter illness compared to those who were unvaccinated.”

The study collected four weeks of data from the CDC’s own HEROES-RECOVER study, which receives data from health care workers, first responders, front-line workers and essential workers who may be out in the public more often than the normal person.

  • “These groups are more likely to be exposed to the virus that causes COVID-19 because of their occupations,” according to the CDC.
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CDC Director Rochelle P. Walensky said in a statement: “COVID-19 vaccines are a critical tool in overcoming this pandemic. Findings from the extended timeframe of this study add to accumulating evidence that mRNA COVID-19 vaccines are effective and should prevent most infections — but that fully vaccinated people who still get COVID-19 are likely to have milder, shorter illness and appear to be less likely to spread the virus to others. These benefits are another important reason to get vaccinated.”

Is this true in the real world?

A previous study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that the mRNA COVID-19 vaccines from Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech are about 90% effective in preventing COVID-19 in real-world settings.

  • “This is very reassuring news,” said the CDC’s Mark Thompson, the study’s lead author, according to The Associated Press. “We have a vaccine that’s working very well.”
  • That study was done in March 2021.
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What about vaccine breakthroughs?

Experts previously said it’s fully expected that people will still get COVID-19 even if they’ve had full vaccination, according to NPR. However, research has shown people can get infected but not become ill from the vaccine.