Minnesota health officials comment on COVID-19 reinfection case in Hong Kong

It's the first confirmed case of reinfection of the coronavirus.
Author:
Publish date:

Hong Kong is home to the first confirmed case of a patient being infected for a second time with the novel coronavirus. 

University of Hong Kong researchers released a statement Monday saying the first confirmed case of reinfection was found in a 33-year-old who was first infected with COVID-19 between 4-5 months ago. 

“An apparently young and healthy patient had a second case of Covid-19 infection which was diagnosed 4.5 months after the first episode,” researchers said. 

Minnesota Health Commissioner Jan Malcolm said "we are aware of that case report," while infectious disease director Kris Ehresmann said reinfection is a possibility that "we have been waiting for." 

The Hong Kong patient, who had mild symptoms the first time and no symptoms the second time, is believed to have contracted the virus again while traveling in Spain. 

“Our results prove that his second infection is caused by a new virus that he acquired recently rather than prolonged viral shedding,” said Dr. Kelvin Kai-Wang To, a clinical microbiologist at the University of Hong Kong.

There are no known instances of reinfection in Minnesota, though health officials from La Crosse County in southwest Wisconsin announced a suspected case of reinfection in early August. The county health department said it was treating the case as a reinfection, mainly because the patient's symptoms "were not the same the second time." 

Other instances of secondary positive tests are believed to be caused by virus remnants remaining in a person's system, which can be detected by diagnostic tests months later. The CDC advises individuals experiencing COVID-19 symptoms for a second time more than three months after the original instance should be re-tested. 

Ehresmann said hearing news of a confirmed reinfection case is a "disappointment," but "all the more reason why it's so important that everyone needs to continue to socially distance, wear a mask, and stay home if you're sick." 

The CDC says the level of immunity a person has after contracting COVID-19 is unknown and being studied. 

Next Up

ambulance

Police searching for driver after fatal hit-and-run in Minneapolis

Police say the driver of a cream or white SUV hit a man in the road and then fled.

bloomington police incident

BREAKING: Area of Bloomington shut down, police have building surrounded

Portions of Lyndale Avenue and American Boulevard are closed.

police lights

Attempted luring of 14-year-old girl reported in West St. Paul

The suspect is described as a white man in his 40s.

Screen Shot 2021-03-04 at 9.19.48 PM

Worker, 18, suffers serious electric shock at Vikings apartments site

The worker was reportedly in a critical condition Thursday.

49920879552_ef6458affd_o2

As golf season approaches, book your round now at Dacotah Ridge GC

The stunning course is designed by world-renowned architect Rees Jones.

Kevin Garnett

Kevin Garnett's group out of potential Timberwolves sale

Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor said that Garnett's group was not one of "more than 10" to buy the team.

axebridge

Full production winery set to open in Minneapolis this month

The couple behind Schram Vineyards Winery and Brewery is opening AxeBridge Wine Company in Minneapolis' North Loop neighborhood.

ambulance

Pedestrian killed in two-vehicle crash in Crystal

The incident happened just after noon.

Screen Shot 2021-03-04 at 1.45.48 PM

Foss Swim School opens its 9th Minnesota location in former Pier 1 store

The Eden Prairie based company has 22 locations across the Midwest.

police tape, crime scene

Charges: Minneapolis man kills woman, tells police to kill him

A convicted felon is accused of fatally shooting a 29-year-old woman on Feb. 28.

Related

coronavirus, ICU, COVID-19

MN health officials say increase in COVID-19 hospitalizations 'likely'

Younger people have been getting infected, meaning they could transmit it to older, more vulnerable people.

coronavirus, ICU

MN health officials expect to see rise in COVID-19 deaths

The case fatality rate rises with age in Minnesota.

coronavirus

Confirmed COVID-19 cases in Minnesota reaches 60

The number of confirmed cases continues to climb in Minnesota.

coronavirus, ICU, COVID-19

Minnesota health officials: 'We're not done with COVID yet'

The state has seen less activity in recent weeks, but health officials don't think what they prepared for was overkill.

SARS-CoV-2, novel coronavirus

Minnesota reaches 700 COVID-19 deaths, ICU cases rising

Minnesota has now exceeded 700 deaths from the disease caused by the new coronavirus.

coronavirus

MN officials watching for child syndrome linked to COVID-19, but say it's 'rare'

Health experts in Minnesota are keeping an eye out for the rare syndrome.

coronavirus

MN health officials criticize CDC change to COVID-19 testing guidelines

The MDH wants asymptomatic people who may have been exposed to get tested.