Not enough? 14 Israelis who got third vaccine dose still infected with COVID-19

An elderly Israeli receives a third COVID-19 vaccine dose at a retirement residence in Jerusalem on August 4, 2021. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

Fourteen Israelis have been diagnosed with COVID-19 despite having been received with a third COVID-19 vaccine dose, according to Health Ministry data and reported Times of Israel on Sunday.

According to the network, two of those infected after receiving the booster shot have been hospitalized.

It was unclear when the 14 became infected in relation to when they received their booster. Such isolated cases would not be sufficient for medical officials to draw conclusions about the booster shot’s overall effectiveness in combating the Delta variant of the disease.

Eleven of the 14 were over the age of 60, with the remaining three being immunocompromised people under the age of 60, according to the network. The two that were hospitalized were over 60.

So far, 420,000 Israelis have received a third booster shot as part of a campaign that began last week.

Meanwhile, government ministers fought on Sunday over the prospect of a nationwide lockdown during the upcoming High Holiday period due to an increase in COVID-19 cases.

According to reports on Channels 12 and 13, Education Minister Yifat Shasha-Biton, who has courted controversy by calling school vaccination plans a “crime,” said during the cabinet meeting that the option of a lockdown must be “taken off the agenda.”

She said such talk was leading to economic instability and “people are anxious for… their livelihood,” the reports said. “We have seen the charts — it doesn’t matter whether countries imposed lockdown or not, the morbidity charts look the same.”

Intelligence Minister Elazar Stern concurred: “We need to eliminate the word ‘lockdown’ from our lexicon. We are causing people to live under threat.”

Hamad Amar, a minister in the Finance Ministry, noted that Australia is currently in its eighth lockdown yet cases are still on the rise, claiming that “lockdown isn’t a solution.”

Meanwhile, the Health Ministry released new figures Sunday morning showing a continued rise in serious coronavirus cases, with 21 new patients on Saturday bringing the total number to 348, up from 257 on Thursday.

An additional 2,886 people were diagnosed with the virus Saturday at a positive test rate of 3.83 percent, bringing the total number of cases in Israel since the start of the pandemic to 898,433.

The ministry said that out of Israel’s population of some 9.3 million, over 5.8 million have received at least one vaccine dose, nearly 5.4 million have gotten two and over 420,000 have been administered a third booster shot.

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