People should get vaccinated even if they’ve had COVID-19
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), even people who have already recovered from COVID-19 should get vaccinated to protect against serious illness. Research has not yet shown how long people are protected from getting the virus again.
However, evidence is emerging that people get better protection by being fully vaccinated compared with having had COVID-19. A study published in Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report showed that unvaccinated people who already had COVID19 are more than two times as likely than fully vaccinated people to get the virus again.
The virus and its variants are still a threat to people who are unvaccinated. Some people who get COVID-19 can become severely ill, which could result in hospitalization, and some people have ongoing health problems several weeks or even longer after getting infected. Even people who did not have symptoms when they were infected can have these ongoing health problems.
As the virus is still new, scientists are unsure how long protection lasts for those who are vaccinated. But they do know that COVID-19hascausedveryserious illness and death for a lot of people.
Even those who are asymptomatic can risk passing the virus. Someone may not know they have been exposed and can spread the virus to others. This is why getting a COVID-19 vaccine is a safer choice.
People who have a condition or are taking medications that weakentheirimmunesystemmay not be fully protected, even if they are fully vaccinated. They should continue to take all precautions recommended for unvaccinated people, including wearing a wellfitted mask, until advised otherwise by their healthcare provider.
Anyone who was treated for COVID-19 with monoclonal antibodies or convalescent plasma should wait 90 days before getting a COVID-19 vaccine. If they are unsure what they received, they should first talk to the healthcare professional who treated them. And, of course, anyone who has questionsaboutgettingaCOVID19 vaccine should consult their primary-care physician.
Experts are still learning more about how long vaccines protect against COVID-19 in real-world conditions. The CDC is constantly reviewing evidence and updating guidance.