Of the people who have previously had COVID-19, less than one percent of them have caught it a second time; that’s according to a research conducted by the Office for National Statistics.
The ONS found that only 191 out of 20,000 COVID survivors tested positive for the virus again months after their recovery.
Findings from the research also suggest that only reinfected people are half as likely to suffer from COVID-19 symptoms as opposed to those who are catching it for the first time.
Lower viral loads
According to the ONS, close to half of first time infected people suffer from symptoms of COVID-19 within five weeks of testing positive.
Their research also points to just one out of four reinfected people falling ill the second time around owing to their lower viral loads. According to the ONS,
For individuals infected with coronavirus (COVID-19) for a second time, average viral load was lower compared with the first infection. This suggests most of these individuals may have had a stronger immune response to the initial infection, which helped them respond to the reinfection more effectively.
For the study, the agency identified some 19,467 people who previously tested positive, between April 2020 and August 2021, putting them 'at risk' of reinfection.
To count as a reinfection, someone has to test positive for the virus approximately three months after the initial positive result.
The ONS also should have a negative result before testing positive again.
Less than 200 people in the group caught the virus for a second time, making it less than one in 10.
Professor James Naismith, a structural biologist at the University of Oxford, told MailOnline:
The data confirm that immunity is the best way out of the pandemic. Immunity by vaccination is very safe and effective. Immunity by infection is a gamble. Infection can lead to death or serious illness and/or long Covid.