Two more studies show contracting COVID-19 prevents against future infection for 6-8 months

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New York Daily News:

People who are infected with coronavirus and survive are protected against reinfection for at least six months, two new studies have found.

The studies, one from Oxford University and the other by the U.S. National Cancer Institute, are the latest in a series of medical findings that have shown getting COVID-19 provides temporary immunity from reinfection, the Associated Press reported.

People infected with the virus develop antibodies in their immune system, which fend off the disease should it reenter their body. Though there have been occasional cases of reinfection worldwide, in most people those antibodies last for several months.

Surviving a COVID infection provides an immune defense on par with receiving a vaccine, Dr. Ned Sharpless of the National Cancer Institute told the AP.

Nonetheless, scientists have encouraged anyone previously infected with COVID to be vaccinated.

The Oxford study, published Wednesday in the New England Journal of Medicine, included more than 12,000 English health care workers. The NCI study, which is undergoing the peer review process, involved more than 3 million people.

Two smaller-scale studies, one in South Korea and another in Australia, found the COVID-fighting antibodies last for eight months.

Joshua Wolf, a specialist not involved in any of the studies, told the AP that the results were “not surprising… but really reassuring.”

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