Can you get the new strain of COVID-19 if you’ve already had Coronavirus?

A mutated strain of coronavirus is raising alarm.
A mutated strain of coronavirus is raising alarm.(WRDW)
Published: Jan. 5, 2021 at 11:51 AM CST
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Increasing cases of a more contagious strain of COVID-19 are showing up in the United States, leading some to wonder if it’s possible to get this new strain if you’ve already had coronavirus.

District Medical Officer for the Alabama Department of Public Health, Dr. Karen Landers, said the department is looking at the data on this new strain, and there is still more to learn about it.

Dr. Landers said she believes this new variant of the virus has been in the United States for a while now, but since not everyone who gets COVID-19 has their virus sequenced, it’s impossible to know for sure when it arrived.

RNA viruses do mutate, and doctors have said that’s typically a result of a virus trying to make copies of itself.

They said this strain is more infectious because it’s able to bind more tightly to your nasal passages, so if you’ve already had COVID-19, you’ll want to continue taking precautions.

“We do know that persons potentially could be re-infected with COVID simply because the disease does not confirm long-term immunity, so at this point in time it’s certainly possible that persons could become re-infected,” Dr. Landers explained.

Doctors said that if you are exposed to this new strain, you have a 40 to 70% chance of getting it.

And while this variant is more contagious, doctors said it is not necessarily more deadly.

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