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Two separate sero surveys in UP to study prevalence of coronavirus

The health authorities –both central and state-- are striving to understand the prevalence of coronavirus infection in the urban and rural sectors.

Published: 22nd August 2020 06:18 PM  |   Last Updated: 22nd August 2020 06:18 PM   |  A+A-

A health worker takes a nasal swab to test for COVID-19 in a government school in New Delhi.

A health worker takes a nasal swab to test for COVID-19 in a government school. (Photo | AP)

By Express News Service

LUCKNOW: With Uttar Pradesh inching towards 2 lakh COVID-19 cases, the state is likely to conduct another sero surveys to study the prevalence of the virus in both rural and urban areas.

While the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) is conducting a sero survey across seven UP districts, state Health and Family Welfare Department would cover a dozen districts as soon after the completion of ICMR survey. 

The health authorities –both central and state-- are striving to understand the prevalence of coronavirus infection in the urban and rural sectors. The sero survey involves testing of blood serum of a group of individuals to determine the presence of antibodies against corona infection.

The seven districts being covered in ICMR sero survey include Gautam Buddh Nagar, Saharanpur in the western region, Balrampur, Gonda, Unnao, Auraiya in the central region and Mau in eastern region of the state.

READ| Sero survey in Delhi says nothing on herd immunity: Experts

The 12 districts to be covered by the UP Health and Family Welfare Department include Bareilly, Meerut, Lucknow, Kanpur, Varanasi, Gorakhpur, Kaushambi, Prayagraj. Moradabad, Ghaziabad, Baghpat and Agra.

While the ICMR survey is focused mostly rural population, the state health department would conduct it in the urban hubs where the maximum spread of the infection has been reported.

The ICMR survey is likely to conclude within a week and the related data would be released by the National Institute of Epidemiology, Chennai in mid-September. Earlier. the premier central institute had conducted a sero survey across nine districts – Amroha, Saharanpur, Gautam Buddha Nagar, Bareilly, Balrampur, Mau, Auraiyya, Gonda and Unnao in early May. 

The result had reflected that merely 1% of the population in the nine districts had evidence of past exposure to the deadly virus. However, the earlier survey was conducted at a time when strict lockdown was imposed to check the spread of infection.

However, recent data from the state government shos that there has been a spike in infection in the urban hubs. According to Additional chief secretary, health and family welfare, Amit Mohan
Prasad, the UP Health and Family Welfare Department would conduct the sero survey in coordination with the King George’s Medical University. The report of the sero survey by Uttar Pradesh government is likely to be released around mid-September.

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