According to the second round of the serological survey in Delhi, about 29 per cent of those surveyed had the presence of novel coronavirus-specific antibodies in them.
The result of the second round of the survey was released yesterday.
The first round of the survey, had found antibodies in about 23 per cent of the volunteers. The second round was conducted between the the last week of June and first week of July.
The survey has revealed that in the past one month, about an additional six per cent of the population was infected with the virus.
This indicates that the pandemic is slowing down. It was already evident that the spread of the disease in Delhi was slowing down, but the second round of the serological survey took everybody by surprise because of the extent of the slowdown it revealed.
The Delhi survey numbers also stand out when compared to results of similar exercises in Mumbai and Pune, two cities that have comparable caseloads. The Pune survey reported antibodies in over 51 per cent of the participants, while Mumbai, where the exercise was conducted last month, had found about 40 per cent participants with antibodies.
While releasing the results, Delhi Health Minister Satyendra Jain said, “The rise (in the spread of the disease), rather the exponential rise, is not there. So, it seems, people are taking safety precautions.”
There has been a sharp decline in the number of covid cases in Delhi since the first serological survey was released.
During the past two months, new infections have been far slower than the daily number of recoveries. As per the latest report, active cases in the national capital have dropped to below 12,000 now.
The diseases spreads mainly through asymptomatic carriers. But, the undetected cases have also been slowing down.
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This can happen only in two scenarios – when there are strict isolation and containment measures in place, like during the first phase of lockdown, or when there is near universal adoption of physical distancing, masks, and other sanitation measures.
The survey was conducted in each of the 11 districts. The highest prevalence of the disease was found in Southeast district, where 32.2 per cent of the participants were found with the antibodies. This was also the district that showed the biggest jump from last time, when it had recorded 22.2 per cent disease prevalence. More women (32.2 per cent) were found to have the antibodies than men (28.73 per cent).
As for age demographics, the survey has found maximum seroprevalence in those below 18 years of age (34.7 per cent), followed by those above 50 years of age (31.2 per cent). The 18-49 years age bracket showed 28.5 per cent seroprevalence.
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During the previous survey, eight districts were found to have more than 20% prevalence of Covid, with Central, Northeast, North, and Shahdara districts with almost 27% prevalence. However, in the present survey, 10 out of 11 districts have more than 20% prevalence.