First COVID-19 Reinfection Documented in Hong Kong

August 25, 2020 by Christen Aldrich

Filed under COVID-19 for Employers, COVID-19 for the Workforce

Last modified August 26, 2020

According to this recent article by Stat News, researchers in Hong Kong on Monday reported what appears to be the first confirmed case of COVID-19 reinfection. A 33-year-old man who was first infected by SARS-CoV-2 in late March and then, four and a half months later, seemingly contracted the virus again while traveling in Europe.

The case raises speculations about the durability of immune protection from the coronavirus. But it was also met with caution by other scientists, who questioned the extent to which the case pointed to broader concerns about reinfection. “This is the world’s first documentation of a patient who recovered from COVID-19 but got another episode of COVID-19 afterwards,” the researchers said in a statement.

Even if the Hong Kong case is an outlier, it points to a few implications: For one, people who have recovered from COVID-19 should also be vaccinated, the researchers said. And they should continue following precautions like wearing a mask and physical distancing.

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