Covid Twice

November 9, 2020

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Anchor lead: How common is infection with Covid-19 a second time? Elizabeth Tracey reports

At least three people have been reported to develop second Covid-19 infections after having confirmed infection previously, raising worries about immunity to the infection. Aaron Milstone, an infectious diseases expert at Johns Hopkins, describes what’s known.

Milstone: There have been two or three reports of true second infection with the virus. We don’t know enough about those people yet to know whether or not they have a problem with their immune system that may make them susceptible to infections. But at this point we have more and more data that when people get the virus they develop antibodies to the virus. They’ve been a few recent studies that showed those antibodies lasting three or four months after the infection, which is great news. So I think we are optimistic that people will not get reinfected with the virus, although it still is early to say that reinfections won’t happen.  :33

Milstone says that if you suspect you’re experiencing reinfection, seek medical attention to confirm that with testing. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.

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