Study of US Veterans shows that patients with unvaccinated cancer are nearly twice as likely to develop Covidence and face a higher death rate than those who have had their shots.

  • A new study has found that patients with unvaccinated cancer are nearly twice as likely as their peers to get Covid, and almost three times more likely to succumb to the disease.
  • VA scientists discovered that COVID-19 vaccines have a lower effectiveness in patients with cancer, however the jabs offer some protection.
  • Patients with cancer who have received chemotherapy for their disease were not protected by vaccines. 
  • It was conducted before Omicron and Delta versions were developed, which both are believed to have lower vaccine effectiveness. 

A new study has shown that patients with cancer who have not been vaccinated against COVID-19 are at greater risk for infection and death than those who were vaccinated.

According to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, unvaccinated veterans who have been diagnosed with cancer were nearly twice as likely as those who had the vaccine.

Patients who were not vaccinated had a 1.6% higher risk of contracting the virus.

Although some research suggests that the vaccine may not be as effective in certain types of cancers, this study shows that cancer patients should still get the shot.

Researchers found that unvaccinated cancer patients (orange line) were at a 70 percent increased risk of COVID-19 infection and 60% increased risk of death from Covid when compared to their vaccinated peers (blue line)

Research showed that patients with unvaccinated breast cancer (orange line), were more likely to contract COVID-19 than their vaccine-vaccinated counterparts (blue line).

The study in veterans finds that the vaccine is not as effective in cancer patients as it is in the general population - which is confirmed by other studies as well - but still does provide a certain level of protection (file image )

Study in veterans found that the vaccine was not as efficient in treating cancer in patients with advanced disease. This is supported by additional studies. File image

On Thursday, researchers published their findings in JAMA Oncology. 

Every matched pair had similar demographics, such as age, race, and area of residence.

The follow-up visit with the researchers would be available to both members of the same couple, approximately 47 days after their initial enrollment in the study.

Research showed that Covid infection was 70% more common in participants not yet vaccinated than in those who participated in studies.

The study also revealed that 17 of the people in the vaccined group died from Covid between enrollment and follow-up, while 27 were in the unvaccinated.

There is an almost 60% difference in mortality between those who are vaccinated versus those who are not.

Research team discovered that vaccine effectiveness was 58 percent for cancer patients. That’s lower than in the general population. 

Researchers wrote that vaccine effectiveness could decrease as we age and that anticancer and malignancy treatments might be immunosuppressive.

“These factors could explain the decreased effectiveness observed in some cancer patients compared to the effectiveness reported for the general population, which was recently estimated at 89 to 92 per cent.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data shows that an unvaccinated individual is more likely than someone who has been vaccinated to contract Covid. 

The study was conducted between December 2020 (the first month that the jab became available) and May 2021. This occurred before the Delta variety had taken over as the dominant strain of cannabis in the U.S.A and the Omicron version.

The overall vaccine efficacy in the U.S. dropped during the Delta variant surge. Many fear that the new Covid strain is vaccine evasive.

However, the results are still valid and could prove to be beneficial in vaccines – even though they may not be as significant as for the general public.

An earlier study found that approximately ten percent cancer patients don’t have strong antibodies to vaccines.

Cancer patients are also one of the most at-risk groups from the virus, with patients suffering from some types of cancer being at up to a 70 percent increased risk death from Covid.

VA researchers found the vaccine to be less effective than chemotherapy for cancer patients.

Patients receiving chemotherapy without vaccination were 30% more likely to get the virus than those who had been vaccinated.

The unvaccinated are 120 percent more likely than those who have received endocrine therapy to prevent Covid.