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HPE 295 - Health and Fitness for Life

Reference Librarian

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Robert Felthousen
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Rogue Community College
(541) 956-7147

HPE 295 Assignment Questions

Below are the sources the librarians suggest for the data you will need to answer the questions posed by your assignment. Not all the requested data is being collected reliably, particularly now that many people test at home and results are not reported, so you may need to do some calculations, make inferences, or note where you are unable to locate the information. You may also find additional sources with conflicting information. This article from epidemiologist Katelyn Jetelina may be helpful as you "attempt to...think about the quantitative, average risk of COVID-19 from multiple perspectives."

Please also contact your instructor or a librarian if you have additional questions.


For YOUR age group, what % of the US population-- both vaccinated and unvaccinated --- has been infected with the COVID virus?

It does not appear that any kind of cumulative/total percentage number is still being tracked in this way. The CDC, using infection-induced antibody seroprevalence studies, estimated that as of May 2022 about 58.7% of the US population had COVID-19. The rate in Oregon was estimated to be about 44%. The percentage fell for each progressively older age group with closer to 22% of the 65+ population in Oregon estimated to show infection-induced antibodies. The CDC also cautioned that the presence of these antibodies should not be conflated with immunity.

In a report released in June 2023 researchers estimate that in the third quarter of 2022 "96.4% [of the US population aged 16+] had SARS-CoV-2 antibodies from previous infection or vaccination, including 22.6% from infection alone and 26.1% from vaccination alone; 47.7% had hybrid immunity."

What percent had co-morbidities?

The CDC continues to update their list of medical conditions that increase a person's risk of becoming severely ill with COVID-19. They also provide county-by-county estimates for the percentage of the population diagnosed with chronic kidney disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), heart disease, diagnosed diabetes, and obesity.

For YOUR age group, what are the risks associated with getting injected with the COVID vaccination? Statistically, what are the possible side effects for those who receive the vaccination?

"Adverse events are rare" and the data include "[a]ny health problem that happens after vaccination.... An adverse event can be caused by the vaccine or can be caused by a coincidental event not related to the vaccine".

Reactions and adverse events identified in the clinical trials are posted for each approved vaccine:



Janssen/J&J (This vaccine is no longer available in the US)


Some people cite VAERS, the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System, when discussing risks associated with the Covid vaccine, but since this database allows anyone to report anything that they experience following a vaccine without determining whether it was caused by the vaccine, it is not useful as a source to cite vetted potential risks and/or side effects. According to VAERS: 

VAERS is a passive reporting system, meaning it relies on individuals to send in reports of their experiences to CDC and FDA. VAERS is not designed to determine if a vaccine caused a health problem, but is especially useful for detecting unusual or unexpected patterns of adverse event reporting that might indicate a possible safety problem with a vaccine. This way, VAERS can provide CDC and FDA with valuable information that additional work and evaluation is necessary to further assess a possible safety concern.

VAERS data has helped researchers identify "Adverse Events of Interest" including anaphylaxis, thrombosis with thrombocytopenia syndrome (TTS), myocarditis and pericarditis, and Guillain-Barré Syndrome. 


For YOUR age group, what are the risks for remaining unvaccinated? 

For YOUR age group, what happened to those who were unvaccinated and contracted COVID?

Though studies may not include particularly specific age ranges, the CDC does list studies that look at vaccine effectiveness through a variety of lenses. 


What percent of those who were unvaccinated and contracted COVID died in your age group?

The CDC stopped gathering this information as of May 2023. The archive is available. The Covid Data Tracker continues to show the cumulative number of people who have died from COVID-19 as well as the percentage of total deaths in the US attributable to COVID-19.


What percent of those who were unvaccinated and contracted COVID had mild symptoms in your age group?

People who experience mild symptoms from COVID-19 are often not included in official case counts so determining an accurate percentage may be difficult. People with mild illness are "[i]ndividuals who have any of the various signs and symptoms of COVID-19 (e.g., fever, cough, sore throat, malaise, headache, muscle pain, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of taste and smell) but do not have shortness of breath, dyspnea, or abnormal chest imaging."


For your age group, what happened to those who were vaccinated but still contracted COVID? 

Why Covid Deaths Among Vaccinated Show That Boosters Matter

Should I Get a Covid Booster? (Includes some information on what we know about the benefits of primary and booster vaccines.)

Research Article Databases

The EBSCO databases search a wide variety of publications for varying audiences. The ones listed below are most likely to include the additional studies you are required to cite. Look closely at the source and the timeliness of the materials you select, and ask a librarian for help if you are struggling to find what you need. There are also EBSCO tutorials available.


International Resources