COVID-19 vaccination is more than twice as protective as circulating antibodies in people who had a prior infection with SARS-CoV-2, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports. 

“A study of COVID-19 infections in Kentucky among people who were previously infected with SAR-CoV-2 shows that unvaccinated individuals are more than twice as likely to be reinfected with COVID-19 than those who were fully vaccinated after initially contracting the virus,” the CDC states.1 “These data further indicate that COVID-19 vaccines offer better protection than natural immunity alone and that vaccines, even after prior infection, help prevent reinfections.”

This has been something of an ongoing issue, with some who acquired COVID-19 citing natural immunity and no need for vaccination.

This is a doubly dangerous view that comes amid the national struggle to get the unvaccinated to roll up their sleeves. Other emerging incentives are that COVID-19 is being seen in younger patients, and almost all hospitalizations and deaths are in the unvaccinated. 

“The study of hundreds of Kentucky residents with previous infections through June 2021 found that those who were unvaccinated had 2.34 times the odds of reinfection compared with those who were fully vaccinated,” the CDC reported. 


  1. Cavanaugh AM, Spicer KB, Thoroughman D, et al. Reduced risk of reinfection with SARS-CoV-2 after COVID-19 vaccination — Kentucky, May-June 2021. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep 2021; Aug 6. doi: [Online ahead of print].