01 DEC 2021

Vaccines vs. Natural Immunity

Artistic computer rendering of COVID-19 antibodies.
How much immunity does someone have after recovering from a coronavirus infection, and how does it compare with immunity provided by vaccination?

What’s more effective, natural immunity from infection or immunity-induced from the COVID-19 vaccine? In a recent review of the literature including their own data, The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that immunity from the vaccine and immunity from COVID-19 infection both last at least six months. However, immunity from the vaccine is more consistent and may result in a stronger antibody response.

In comparing the two types of immunity, scientists said research shows vaccination provides a “higher, more robust and more consistent level of immunity to protect people from COVID-19 than infection alone.”

NorthBay Healthcare Chief Medical Officer Seth Kaufman, M.D., says, “The CDC study found that people who had natural immunity from having recently fought off COVID-19 and who were not vaccinated were five times more likely to experience another COVID-19 infection than were vaccinated people who had not previously been infected.”

The CDC also found that antibody levels vary from person to person from natural immunity. No COVID-19 case is the same. So it’s hard for officials to determine how well someone is protected by natural immunity.

“The bottom line: given what’s known and not known about immunity, people who have been infected with the virus should still get vaccinated.” Recommends Dr. Kaufman.

To schedule your vaccine or register for the Solano County Fairgrounds, visit MyTurn.Gov. NorthBay patients seeking a vaccine at their center for primary care can message their physician's office via the patient portal to request the vaccine.

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