As the number of people infected with Covid-19 rises, many are questioning whether they may have contracted Covid-19 more than once. Below are the talk numbers from scientific research.
According to articles in British newspapers iNews and the Guardian, there is a lot of information about people being infected with Covid-19 multiple times. So what is the risk of reinfection and when does it happen?
Here are some data from the UK that may help answer that question.
What is Covid-19 reinfection? Who are the high-risk groups for the disease?
The phrase Covid-19 reinfection generally refers to the detection of a second or more Covid-19 infection, regardless of variant.
The risk of reinfection depends on a range of factors. For example, data suggest that unvaccinated individuals are at higher risk of reinfection, while individuals with fewer initial infections (those with lower immune responses) may be at higher risk of reinfection. In addition, the risk of reinfection depends on the type of mutation and how long a person has been vaccinated.
The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) defines reinfection as a positive case at least 90 days after a previously confirmed Covid-19 infection.
Is it possible to get Covid-19 multiple times?
According to iNews, you can get Covid-19 multiple times, especially with so many different changes at different times.
An analysis by the UK Health Security Agency published in December 2021 found that one in 10 Omicron patients in the UK had contracted Covid-19.
From the start of the pandemic to 9 January 2022, there may be 425,890 cases of Covid-19 reinfection in the UK, according to the latest UKHSA figures.
Few reinfections can be “confirmed” because this requires genetic sequencing. Also, in the early stages of the outbreak, many people in the UK may have been infected but never tested. Therefore, there are many first infections that may not be counted.
Danny Altman, professor of immunology at Imperial College London, said: “Combining two years of the pandemic, weakened antibodies, Delta immunity and Omicron immunity, reinfection has occurred in the UK. Quite common”.
UK research on Omicrons suggests past infection with Covid-19 does not provide much protection for Omicrons.
Researchers at Imperial College London also found that the Omicron variant had little or no immunity to one or two doses of Covid-19 infection.
What about Triceratops?
Deltacron is the latest variant, so scientists are still working on it.
According to an analysis of Deltacron’s genetic code, its “body” came from the Delta variant, while its spines came from Omicron.
Recombinant viruses emerge when patients are infected with both variants and their cells replicate together.
Maria van Kerkhove, head of the World Health Organization’s (WHO) Covid technical team, wrote on Twitter that recombinant variants could emerge, especially when the powerful Omicron and Delta are in circulation.
Many are concerned about the severity of the “hybrid” variant of Deltacron, as Delta typically causes more severe disease than other variants, while Omicron is highly contagious.
But the scientists stress that humans currently have significant immunity to both variants, so there’s no reason to think the new variant poses a danger.