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Why headlines – and media stories – can be so misleading

I really like the HealthDay web site but a headline yesterday was a reminder that you always have to read the full story (or the original source to the article) before accepting a headline’s conclusion.

Here’s the headline: Thousands of Vaccinated People in U.S. Infected With COVID-19.

That’s true, of course, but it also strongly implies that the vaccines aren’t very effective, and a headline like that might sway some already skeptical people not to get vaccinated because hey, the vaccines don’t work.

But the reality is that over 70 million – million – people have been fully vaccinated in the US and only 5,800 people have reported becoming infected after their full vaccination.

That’s actually an amazingly positive response to the vaccines.

Of course, breakthrough infections will happen because vaccines are not 100 % effective.

But happily, in this pandemic, the breakthrough infections are remaining very low in numbers, and we can only hope that that doesn’t change when the variants are in full swing.