TUCSON, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -- New research from The University of Arizona shows you may have immunity from COVID-19 for at least half a year after getting the virus.

"We have a handful of people that we've looked at about five to seven months after they recovered from the infection, and in those cases, we see antibodies in all of them," said Deepta Bhattacharya, Associate Professor of Immunobiology at UArizona.

While people should continue wearing masks and social distancing, that may mean Arizonans have immunity to the virus during that time.

"I think the odds of actually getting re-infected are actually pretty low," said Bhattacharya.

Jayne Most fought coronavirus over the summer. She's a registered nurse at The Phoenix Indian Medical Center.

"Healthcare workers, if they could have a longer immunity, it would be better because they're the ones that are on the front lines and dealing with people who have COVID," said Most. "...it's nice that they last longer because they originally told me just two months."

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In March, The University of Arizona began its antibody study, initially testing nearly six-thousand Arizonans for its research.

"Really, what we wanted to know is, are there any inherent reasons why one could not mount a lasting and protective antibody response, and we don't really see that, so I think that really bodes well for the vaccines that are being trialed right now," said Bhattacharya. He said researchers will monitor people with antibodies a little longer.

"It's kind of comforting knowing that, but it's not end all be all by any means," said Most.

Most said she almost died the first time she fought COVID, and she worries she would not survive it again. Her family set up this GoFundMe page to help her pay for medical bills.

 

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