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VERIFY: Yes, you can catch COVID more than once

Public health officials worry the increased contagiousness of the omicron variant could make people more likely to get reinfected.

PORTLAND, Maine — With hundreds of Mainers testing positive for COVID each day, many people wonder if a person can get reinfected with the virus if they have already caught it and recovered.

Tracy from Bridgton asked NEWS CENTER Maine to Verify this question.


Can you catch COVID more than once?




This is true.


The U.S. CDC said reinfection is rare but does happen.

The World Health Organization said the omicron variant could cause more reinfections. The agency said limited early data show people who have previously had COVID could become reinfected more easily with omicron than other variants of concern.

Mills said in a text, "Yes if someone catches COVID once, they can catch it again."

"Generally speaking, COVID infection's immunity doesn't last as long as the vaccine and does not lead to as robust immunity as the vaccine, which is why people who've had the infection still need to get vaccinated," she wrote.

Data from the U.S. CDC backs up Mills' statement

She also said reinfection appears more common with the omicron variant.

Mills said in Maine, hospitalized patients with COVID tend to be unvaccinated, between the age of 30 and 70, and also much sicker, requiring hospitalization for weeks.

The latest COVID test result sequencing sample from the Maine CDC showed that omicron made up 8.75% of cases in the week leading to Christmas. Delta remains the dominant variant in Maine.

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