People Who’ve Had COVID-19 May Only Need One Dose Of Vaccine, Study Says

A new study conducted by researchers at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai shows that people who’ve contracted coronavirus and recovered may only need one dose of the vaccine. 

Florian Krammer, the author of the study, told The New York Times he believed one shot would be enough to develop the same level of protection as people who get two doses of vaccine. 

“This would also spare individuals from unnecessary pain when getting the second dose, and it would free up additional vaccine doses,” Krammer said. 

Survivors of the coronavirus, Krammer found, had significantly higher levels of antibodies after receiving two doses of the vaccine compared to those who hadn’t contracted COVID-19 before getting vaccinated. The study examined 231 vaccinated people and included 83 people who had contracted and survived the virus. 

Researchers also found that people who had recovered from the coronavirus had a greater likelihood of experiencing symptoms after receiving their first dose of vaccine including chills, muscle aches, and headaches. 

Some health experts agree with Krammer’s findings, while others say there needs to be more data. 

E. John Wherry, the director of the Institute for Immunology at the University of Pennsylvania told the outlet he wants to see more data that shows the antibodies in the study actually do their job in preventing the coronavirus from replicating in a person’s body. 

“Just because an antibody binds to a part of the virus does not mean it’s going to protect you from being infected,” Wherry said. 

The new information and differing opinions come as experts weigh in on President Joe Biden’s vaccine rollout. While some say the administration should prioritize getting a first dose to as many people as possible, Dr. Anthony Fauci said he wants to complete second doses to people who’ve already received their first. 

“The first priority will always be to get the people who’ve gotten their first doses to get their second,” Fauci said. 

On Tuesday (February 2), the government announced vaccines would be shipped directly to pharmacies as it ramps up efforts to distribute the vaccine to millions of Americans, and hopefully address the racial disparity present in the current distribution plans that is leaving Black Americans out of vaccine appointments. 

Photo: Getty Images

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