Fauci still urges COVID vaccines but admits they ‘don't protect overly well’ against infection

Infectious disease specialist says vaccines still worth it because they protect against more severe cases

Updated: July 13, 2022 - 7:22am

The Facts Inside Our Reporter’s Notebook

Dr. Anthony Fauci is now acknowledging what many experts have been warning for months: the COVID-19 vaccines "don't protect overly well" against infection.

Fauci, who recently got the coronavirus despite being vaccinated and boosted, told Fox News on Tuesday that the inoculations are still worth it because they clearly help prevent the virus from advancing to a more serious infection  

"One of the things that's clear from the data [is] that even though vaccines - because of the high degree of transmissibility of this virus - don't protect overly well, as it were, against infection, they protect quite well against severe disease leading to hospitalization and death," he said. 

"And I believe that's the reason ... why at my age, being vaccinated and boosted, even though it didn't protect me against infection, I feel confident that it made a major role in protecting me from progressing to severe disease," he also said. "That's very likely why I had a relatively mild course."

The nation’s top infectious disease doctor and President Biden's chief medical advisor  said he continues to strongly recommend getting the shots.

"My message to people who seem confused because people who are vaccinated get infected - the answer is if you weren't vaccinated, the likelihood [is] you would have had [a] more severe course than you did have when you were vaccinated," he explained.