A previous Covid-19 infection can reduce the risk of contracting the virus again in the next 10 months by up to 85%, as study results show
- A new study found that contracting COVID-19 can increase the risk of contracting the virus again by up to 85%.
- Re-infection is still possible, and researchers do not yet know what effects variants can have
- Many previously feared older patients with Covid were more at risk of contracting the virus again due to their weak immune system
People who have already contracted COVID-19 are significantly less likely to get infected again with the virus after ten months, suggests a new study.
Researchers from the Institute of Health Informatics at the University of College London (UCL) studied infections in residents and home care workers from October 2020 to February 2021.
They used antibody tests to determine who had previously been infected with the virus and compared those who were previously with those who never had the virus.
The results showed that residents who previously had Covid were 85 percent less likely to test positive for Covid again than their peers, and employees were 60 percent less likely to test positive for Covid again.
A study conducted on nursing home patients and staff in England found that residents were 65 percent less likely to contract the virus if they had previously had it, while younger workers were 85 percent less likely to contract the virus
“It is really good news that a natural infection protects against re-infection during this time. The risk of getting infected twice seems to be very low, ”said lead author Dr. Maria Krutikov, Wellcome Trust PhD Fellow in the UK.
“The fact that previous COVID-19 infection offers high levels of protection to nursing home residents is also comforting given past concerns that these individuals may have less robust immune responses as they age.”
“These results are particularly important as this vulnerable group has not been the focus of much research.”
The study included 683 residents with a mean age of 86 and 100 nursing home workers in England.
Any participant in the study who received a vaccine was removed from the data 12 days after the last vaccination in their vaccine sequence.
“This was a unique opportunity to study the protective effects of natural infections in this cohort prior to vaccination,” said lead author Dr. Laura Shallcross, a public health medicine advisor at UCL.
“An important next step is to examine the duration of immunity after natural infection and vaccination and to assess whether this protective effect is maintained against current and emerging variants.”
The level of protection someone who previously had Covid-19 could have from the virus in the future has created concern for doctors, researchers, and even politicians.
While some initially believed getting the virus once would make them safe for the future, it has now been discovered that a person can infect it twice.
There have been many reports of people testing positive for the virus months apart, suggesting they might eventually become infected again.
The study concludes that while they are safer than they were before, there is still a chance someone could contract the virus for months after being infected.
Virus variants also throw another wrench into the fray, as researchers still do not know whether antibodies from some variants of the virus will protect the individual from other variants of the virus.
Cases have plummeted in the past few weeks as more Americans get vaccinated against the virus.
According to official data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 60 percent of US adults have received at least one vaccination with a Covid-19 vaccine.