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The latest on breakthrough cases | Coronavirus Newsletter

Plus, vaccine mandates at Penn State and for the Philly Marathon

Ying Zhang receives her first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at the Crane Community Center in Philadelphia in July.
Ying Zhang receives her first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at the Crane Community Center in Philadelphia in July.Read moreHEATHER KHALIFA / Staff Photographer

The gist: The delta variant has been driving case numbers for months, but evidently another obstacle to ending the pandemic is emerging — waning immunity. Available figures indicated that vaccinated people accounted for more than 25% of the COVID-19 positive tests and hospitalizations in Pennsylvania during the last month. And state Department of Health officials said that was in line with national rates. That said, despite the breakthrough cases, data show that the fully vaccinated people are still less likely to get sick with the virus, and less likely to be hospitalized or die if they do get infected.

— Anthony R. Wood (@woodt15,

The latest Pennsylvania figures are a change from numbers released last month covering the entirety of the vaccination effort. From Jan. 1 to Oct. 4, the state reported just 9% of COVID-19 infections were breakthrough cases, and just 7% of those hospitalized had been vaccinated. By contrast, in the past month, out of 4,989 hospitalizations, almost 1,300 were fully vaccinated people. One factor in driving up those numbers likely would be the fact that more people have been vaccinated. Read more here for the latest on breakthrough cases.

What you need to know:

👟 Another symptom that this marathon pandemic hasn’t run its course: All those participating in the Philly Marathon will have to be vaccinated.

🏃 Speaking of racers, after last year’s COVID-19 pause, about 17,000 feet pounded Broad Street Sunday for the Broad Street Run.

💉 Even if they are working remotely, all 22,000 Penn State faculty members and staff at the university’s main campus will have to provide proof of vaccination by Dec. 8.

💰 The coronavirus is holding back the economy, and Labor Secretary Marty Walsh believes fear is a big factor.

🏀 The Philadelphia 76ers and the rest of the league will be shooting for a normal season, a year after the pandemic-enforced NBA bubble.

Local coronavirus numbers

📈 Coronavirus case numbers in the last seven-days have been close to those of the previous week in both Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Track the latest data here.

Helpful resources

  1. Should you get a breakthrough infection, here’s what to expect.

  2. If you’re planning on dining out or working out in Philly, these places require vaccination proof.

  3. The Philadelphia region has numerous options for getting a COVID-19 test.

  4. If you lost your vaccine card (it happens), it can be replaced.

A dose of diversion: A ‘breathtaking’ BLT? Check out the Dining Guide.

After a year of working at home and eating from take-out containers, restaurant critic Craig LaBan found a brave new world of dining. As he observes in the 2021 Dining Guide, “I was also overwhelmed by the incredible amount of great food there was to try, and the ever-changing dining landscape.”

And be sure to sign up for our Let’s Eat newsletter for more on Philly’s food and restaurant scene.

🏌️Fore-ward: A golf renaissance is underway amid pandemic restrictions.

👹 “Boo at the Zoo” is among the fun options for kids.

💵 On a tight budget? Here are some $0.00 event suggestions.

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