Three people in Hawaii who were fully vaccinated have tested positive for COVID-19.
Despite this surprising finding, health officials are still urging everyone to get vaccinated arguing that a vaccine that is 95% effective will protect 95 out of 100 people, meaning 5% may still contract the virus if exposed.
The individuals became infected after receiving both doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, news station KITV reported.
In all three cases, the patients did not become severely ill nor does it and it appear that they transmitted the virus to anyone else, the state Department of Health said.
One of the patients was a health care worker in Oahu who completed the vaccine double-dose regimen in early January 2021.
About a month later, the worker traveled to several cities in the US and was tested for the virus prior to returning to Hawaii. The positive test notification was made upon the worker’s return to the state, health officials said.
Dr. Melinda Ashton of Hawaii Pacific Health said the case is a reminder of the risks associated with traveling even if you’re vaccinated against the virus.
“Absolutely you need to be careful during those times when you’re in the airport, on the airplane, with other people in larger groups,” Ashton told the outlet.
Officials added that it’s not surprising that some vaccinated Hawaiians have tested positive for the virus.
“Some people are going to dive on to this and say, oh, then the vaccine doesn’t work. No, it does work. It works in a huge percentage of people, but not everyone and that’s an important message,” Lt. Gov. Josh Green told news station KHON2.