2/3rd Population Has Covid Antibodies: Health Ministry

The Union Health Ministry of Tuesday informed that the fourth round of the National Sero Survey has been conducted and the overall seroprevalence in the country is at 67.6 per cent.

While addressing the press conference, ICMR Director-General Dr Balram Bhargava said, “The fourth round of national serosurvey was conducted in 70 districts in June-July and included children between 6-17 years of age.”
“Overall seroprevalence is 67.6 per cent in the entire population. In people of 6-9 years age group, it was 57.2 per cent; in 10-17 years, it was 61.6 per cent; in 18-44 years, it was 66.7 per cent; in 45-60 years, it was 77.6 per cent,” said Dr Balram Bhargava.

Asked whether there is any difference between seroprevalence between males and females or in rural and urban areas, Bhargava said, “There was no difference in seroprevalence in males and females and rural and urban areas. In unvaccinated, the seroprevalence was 62.3 per cent and with one dose of vaccine, it was 81 per cent. In those who received both doses, it was 89.8 per cent.”

Bhargava informed that the Health Ministry studied 7,252 healthcare workers and 10 per cent had not taken the vaccine, the overall seroprevalence in them was 85.2 per cent. “In conclusion, 2/3rd of general population, that is, above the age of 6 years had SARS-CoV-2 infection,” said Dr Bhargava.

Further speaking on Fourth National Serosurvey for COVID-19, Bhargava said, “More importantly, a third of the population did not have antibodies, that is, 40 crore of the population of the country is still vulnerable.”

Implications of the fourth serosurvey clearly show that there is a ray of hope but there is no room for complacency, said Bhargava and added that “We must maintain COVID appropriate behaviour and community engagement. National level serosurvey is not a substitute of state/district level serosurvey.”

On February 4, 2021, Dr Balram Bhargava had informed about the third national sero-survey that was conducted before vaccination started, in the period between December 17, 2020 to January 8, 2021. At that time, overall seroprevalence was 21.5 per cent of the population, which includes 31.7 per cent of urban slums, 26.2 per cent of urban non-slum and 19.1 per cent of rural areas.

Meanwhile, with 30,093 new COVID-19 cases in the last 24 hours, India reported the lowest daily positive cases in the last 125 days. With an increased recovery rate of 97.37 per cent, India witnessed 45,254 recoveries from COVID-19 in the last 24 hours, taking the recovery tally to 3,03,53,710, Union Health Ministry informed on Tuesday. With the new cases reported in the last 24 hours, as many as 3,11,74,322 cases have been reported in the country so far. (ANI)

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