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Seroprevalence Survey 5.0: Over 84% population in Kashmir has COVID antibodies

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SRINAGAR: A new survey has revealed that more than 84 percent of people in Kashmir have antibodies against COVID 19.

Conducted by Community Medicine departments of SKIMS, SKIMS Medical College, Srinagar, Government Medical College Anantnag, and Government Medical College,  Baramulla, the seroprevalence survey was carried out in all 10 districts of Kashmir.

 

“Our study shows 84.3% of the population was positive for IgG-II (or anti-spike protein). The antibodies are produced after infection with SARS CoV -2 as well as after vaccination. The IgM antibodies are usually produced by recent infection with SARS Cov-2 (can rarely also be produced in recent vaccination). This antibody was positive in about 20.75 % of participants,” said Dr. S. Muhammad Salim Khan, Professor and HOD Community Medicine Government College Srinagar and principal investigator of the study.

Srinagar district tops the list with 89.77% people having anti-bodies against Covid 19. It is followed by Anantnag 87.23% people having anti-bodies against Covid 19. Pulwama has the lowest antibody ratio of 78.24%.

In the general population of seven years and above, the study was conducted in all 10 districts of Kashmir. Data was collected in July 2021 with each medical college mentoring two districts. Within each district, 10 clusters were randomly selected. Within each cluster, 40 samples were collected from individuals more than 7 years of age after obtaining proper informed consent for the study.

The household and individual data were collected on customized Epicollect5 software. All the blood samples were sent to the BSL-2 lab at the Biochemistry Department of GMC Srinagar for analysis on high-end Abbott Architect i1000 & i2000 automatic analysers.

Total samples processed and reported include 3586 samples from the general population with a mean age of 35.33 ±18 years. Further, 2077 samples have been processed and reported from among the police personnel, HCW, and antenatal women.  

During the time of the study, a total of 20.3% of participants had received 2 doses of vaccination, and the majority (79.25) had received none. However, since then the vaccination has scaled up and the seropositivity due to vaccination would have gone up also.

“We encourage that people shall follow COVID appropriate behavior by using face masks, maintain social distancing, hand hygiene and more importantly, shall go for full Vaccination against COVID which has been proved to be safe and effective against COVID,” said Dr. Salim.

He urged eligible persons to go for Vaccination against COVID. “We have seen a significant drop in the number of cases who have been admitted in hospitals with moderate to severe diseases. Scaling up vaccination would reduce chances of any possible severe third wave,” he said

District wise        IgG II (Anti Spike antibodies) status:

Anantnag: 87.23%;

Bandipora: 84.42%

Baramulla: 84.91%

Budgam: 83.68%

Ganderbal: 82.8%

Kulgam: 82.95%

Kupwara: 81.05%

Pulwama: 78.24%

Shopian: 86.89%

Srinagar: 89.77%