US health officials told reporters that reinfection with the novel coronavirus is unlikely.
“We have not seen any sign yet of the phenomenon” of reinfection, said Dr. Nancy Messonnier, director of the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Messonnier suggested any reports suggesting otherwise may be indicative of doctors and scientists jumping the gun, skirting around proper scientific review.
“It is really important for the global community to get access to scientific information as quickly as possible and in real time,” she said. ” But in the rush to push out information quickly, there have been some instances already where there hasn’t been appropriate scientific review of some of the data that’s coming out. And that is an essential part of any investigation.”
She said the CDC has been following US cases closely, including “whether or not they continue to harbor the virus in their nose and throat.” Thus far, reinfection is “not something that we’re seeing here, and it has not changed our clinical practice,” she said.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, made similar comments earlier Saturday at a White House briefing.
“There’s no indication that that’s going on at all. If this virus acts like other viruses — which I have no reason to believe it won’t — once you’ve gotten infected and recovered, you’re not going to get infected with the same virus,” Fauci said.