Trust Index: Do COVID booster shots make you more susceptible to the virus?

Gov. DeSantis made the statement in Osceola County

Gov. DeSantis claims booster shots are more likely to get you sick, despite medical officials saying it's better to get vaccinated and boosted.

ORLANDO, Fla. – President Joe Biden tested positive for COVID-19 last week, despite being vaccinated and receiving two booster shots. The president emerged from isolation on Wednesday after testing negative.

Health experts have always said COVID-19 shots may not offer 100% protection from the virus, but they will keep you from getting severely ill. That’s especially true with BA.5, a subvariant of omicron variant of COVID-19 that now makes up the majority of cases in the United States.

With reported cases and hospitalizations rising, health officials urge people to get vaccinated and get booster shots if they are eligible.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, however, has a different stance on booster shots. He said the following Tuesday night at an event in Osceola County:

I mean that’s just what’s so unbelievable about all this stuff, and in fact, I think if you look at the data now you know the people that have had multiple boosters are actually more likely to get infected right now.

The Florida Department of Health’s last report on July 14 showed that more than 5.8 million people have gotten a booster dose.

Currently, people over 50 and some over the age of 12 who are moderately or severely immunocompromised can get a second booster shot.

Dr. Todd Husty, an emergency medical physician in Seminole County, said DeSantis has not looked at all of the data done and is basing his words on raw data from one pharmacy company.

“The data that the governor was referring to is neither true nor false it’s, we don’t know for sure the impact of that data,” Husty said. “Although it appears that no, you are not more susceptible if you’ve been vaccinated and boosted based on other data from other places. You can’t just take one set of data and make that kind of determination.”

“You’re still less likely to get COVID if you’ve been fully vaccinated and boosted,” he added. “So, what’s right and what’s not, it’s too early to be making statements like that and I wish he hadn’t.”

Based on this information, News 6 gives the governor’s comments that multiple boosters make you more likely to get infected a “Be Careful” grade on the Trust Index.

Be Careful

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The American Medical Association says the latest data shows boosters significantly increase protection against the omicron variant and that’s why they recommend a booster shot.

The CDC found that compared with people who have received their primary series and two booster doses, unvaccinated adults 50 to 64 years old were 45 times more likely to be hospitalized from COVID-19.

Unvaccinated adults over 65 were 51 times likelier to land in the hospital.

We reached out to DeSantis’ office to find out what data he used to make those statements. We’re waiting for a response from his office.