MYTH: If I’ve already had COVID-19, I don’t need a vaccine.
FACT: Evidence continues to indicate that getting a COVID-19 vaccine is the best protection against getting COVID-19, whether you have already had COVID-19 or not.
- A study published in August 2021 indicates that if you had COVID-19 before and are not vaccinated, your risk of getting reinfected is more than two times higher than for those who were infected and got vaccinated.
- While evidence suggests there is some level of immunity for those who previously had COVID, it is not known how long you are protected from getting COVID-19 again. Plus, the level of immunity provided by the vaccines after having COVID-19 is higher than the level of immunity for those who had COVID but were not subsequently vaccinated.
- Getting vaccinated provides greater protection to others since the vaccine helps reduce the spread of COVID-19.
At the time of vaccination, be sure to tell your care provider about your history of COVID-19 illness, including the kind of treatment, if any, you received and when you recovered. Wait until your isolation period ends before making an appointment to get the vaccination.
Johns Hopkins University Myth versus Fact page.
Lisa Maragakis, M.D., M.P.H., senior director of infection prevention
Gabor Kelen, M.D., director of the Johns Hopkins Office of Critical Event Preparedness and Response
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