Should I get a COVID-19 vaccine if I've had the virus? 3 things to know
Should you get a COVID-19 vaccine if you’ve had the virus?
Yes. Regardless of previous infection, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says people should plan on getting vaccinated when it's their turn.
Dr. Sharon Nachman, of Stony Brook Children's Hospital, agrees. Watch the video below for her explanation:
After someone recovers, their immune system should keep them from getting sick again right away.
“Your immune system is able to identify the virus, and protect itself,” said Dr. Saskia Popescu, an infectious disease expert at George Mason University.
HOW LONG DOES IMMUNITY LAST?
Scientists still don’t know exactly how long this immunity lasts or how strong it is, though recent research suggests the protection could last for several months.
It’s impossible to know how long a person might be immune, said Dr. Prathit Kulkarni, an infectious disease expert at Baylor College of Medicine. “There’s no way to calculate that.”
HOW DOES THE VACCINE WORK WITH IMMUNITY?
Vaccines, by contrast, are designed to bring about a more consistent and optimal immune response. And they should boost whatever preexisting immunity a person might have from an infection, experts say.
If you’ve been infected in the last three months, the CDC says it's OK to delay vaccination if you want to let others go first while supplies are limited.
An Associated Press report contributed to this guide.