Eric Douglas Published

Long Term COVID Symptoms Worse Than Vaccine Side Effects, Say Doctors

Tom Takubo - COVID Briefing - 091321.jpg

Gov. Jim Justice called upon a local physician to add support for his concerns that many state residents fear that the Covid-19 vaccines are unsafe.

Dr. Tom Takubo, a pulmonologist and who is also the Republican Senate Majority Leader from Kanawha County, said he hasn’t treated a single patient with an injury from the vaccine. He noted that the short term symptoms of the inoculation are far less lingering than long term symptoms seen from those who contract the virus.

“If you get the vaccine and you have aches and chills and soreness in your arm, that’s letting you know the vaccine worked,” he said. “In fact, I would almost be a little more concerned if I had no reaction at all to the vaccine.”

On the other hand, every day he sees patients who are still experiencing symptoms months after getting sick with COVID.

Dr. Clay Marsh, the state’s coronavirus czar, said those who aren’t vaccinated are five times more likely to be hospitalized and more than 10 times more likely to die than someone who is fully vaccinated.

Health officials said there was a problem with the state’s COVID dashboard displaying the daily information, but Justice said the state’s daily positivity rate is 12.12 percent and the cumulative positive rate is 5.52. There are 27,607 active cases in the state.

The state has set all-time records in three categories: the number of people who are hospitalized at 852; 267 patients in the ICU; and 164 people who are on ventilators.

For reference, Marsh said 852 West Virginians are now hospitalized with COVID compared to the first week of July when there were 52. There are 267 West Virginias in ICUs, but the first week of July that number was 17. And there 164 West Virginians on ventilators today but the first week of July there were six.

The overwhelming majority of those people are unvaccinated, Marsh said. Eighty-five percent of those hospitalized are unvaccinated. Ninety percent of those in ICUs are unvaccinated. And between 91 and 93 percent of those on mechanical ventilators are unvaccinated, he added.

Justice noted there are 89 school outbreaks in 33 counties with five schools closed. Fifty-one out of 55 county school systems have mask mandates for K-12 students. Putnam, Pocahontas, Ohio and Mingo are the only four that do not.