Do I really have to get vaccinated if I had COVID?

Here’s a question from my dear friend Samantha, who was brave enough to ask her question on an open forum!

“I keep hearing different things. I had covid in March and just got an antibody test done and it says I still have antibodies. My Dr said, because I still have antibodies I don’t need the vaccine right now. If the vaccine is suppose to get your body to make antibodies and I already have them why do I need the vaccine? Like I said my Dr said I don’t right now. It’s all a bit confusing now and I thought maybe you could help educate myself a bit more. It’s not that I’m anti vaccine, it’s more that I’m on the fence now that I still have antibodies from when I had COVID.”

A: No hate!!! It’s a valid question!! March to June is about 3 months yeah? I tell my patients to get the vax after 90 days. It’s true some people still have antibodies after 90 days, but I personally have also seen reinfections occur after that average of a time.

There are studies done with the side by side of “natural” antibodies versus the vaccine antibodies. The vaccine antibodies last much longer and protect much better. Up to a year or longer which is amazing.

Also, the vaccine antibodies are more protective against the variants than the natural antibodies.

The vaccine participants also were less likely to give COVID to others after that time period!

So, all that said, you could probably wait a bit longer to get the vaccine! At some point you will have to get your antibody *titers* checked pretty regularly to make sure they are still at a good level (positive versus negative is not a specific enough test). My guess is that that could get pretty expensive unless you have the world’s most amazing insurance! I’ve also seen antibody tests, both commercial and medical grade, that are NOT reliable. They’ll be a false positive or false negative, for example.

So for all those reasons, I have much more faith in the vaccine than in people who got COVID and are unvaccinated after 3 months! I would definitely recommend that you complete your vaccine series before the fall. I anticipate a variant surge at that time!

Great question and I hope my answer makes sense!!!!


Dr. Jaya


NPR FAQ Article

Vaccine Immunity is Better Than Natural Infection Immunity Article

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