Beam also says 97% of people in the hospital with the virus aren't vaccinated.

By: KDKA-TV News Staff

HARRISBURG (KDKA) – The vast majority of Pennsylvanians who are in the hospital or dying from COVID-19 are unvaccinated, Acting Secretary of Health Alison Beam said Thursday.

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Beam says 97% of people hospitalized from COVID-19 haven’t gotten the vaccine. On Thursday, there were 462 people in the hospital with COVID-19, and 87 of them were in the ICU.

As for deaths, Beam says 99% of Pennsylvanians dying from the virus are unvaccinated. The pandemic has killed more than 27,000 people in the state so far.

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While the CDC is recommending everyone in counties with surging cases mask up as the more contagious delta variant spreads, Beam says another statewide mask mandate is under consideration right now. Instead, she says the state is focusing on the vaccine as a way to fight the virus.

She said masking is “a tool on the toolbox and we want to make sure to focus on the vaccination effort now to protect us heading into the fall.”

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Nearly 5.7 million people in Pennsylvania are fully vaccinated now. Health officials say the vaccine protects you, and masks protect others.