HYDERABAD: As Telangana currently has a seropositivity rate of 92.9%, it is very highly unlikely that the fourth wave of Covid-19 will hit the State, according to Dr G Srinivasa Rao, Director of Public Health. Speaking to the media on Thursday, he referred to the serosurveillance study conducted by ICMR-NIN in all 33 districts of the State between January 4h and February 2, the results of which were sent to the State government three days ago. In view of the survey findings, the DPH said that there won’t be a fourth wave in Telangana. He, however, stressed that use of face masks remains mandatory, especially at large gatherings. The highest seropositivity rate of 97% was found in Hyderabad and the 89.2% was in Kothagudem district, he said.
The survey also specifically analysed immunity levels among healthcare workers and found it to be at 93.1% in the State with the highest rate of 100% found in Hyderabad and lowest of 83.2% in Wanaparthy. According to Dr Srinivasa Rao, the study also found some interesting insights. “The antibodies were found in 99% of samples collected from people who were previously infected by Covid-19. In individuals who took one dose of the vaccine, it was at 91% and among those who took two doses, it was at 96%. In unvaccinated people, seroprevalence was just 77%, indicating the importance of vaccines,” he said.
He also urged the people to take necessary precautions during the wedding season. “There are no restrictions whatsoever. All can conduct these functions as they like. However, all must compulsorily take vaccines or boosters as applicable. When in large gatherings, all must wear masks,” he said. The DPH also ruled out a fourth wave in the State but said the situation could see a slight change with a slightly higher case rate in six to eight weeks from now.
“Due to Telangana’s hybrid immunity, confirmed by the NIN survey, we can confidently say there will be no fourth wave. But some vulnerable populations who are not immunised are likely to get infected, so they must take vaccines at the earliest,” he said. “Mask rule is not done away with yet in Telangana. Police can still penalise citizens who do not wear masks. We urge cit-izens going to mass gatherings to wear a mask,” he added.