4th round of sero-survey begins in 3 Telangana districts

Hyderabad: National Institute of Nutrition (NIN) in association with the Telangana government began fourth round of community-based sero-surveillance in three districts on Tuesday.

The survey, taken up in Jangaon, Kamareddy and Nalgonda districts, is part of the Indian Council of Medical Research’s (ICMR) country-wide sero-surveillance initiative to test the formation of antibodies among individuals.

Three rounds of the the survey were conducted in these districts in May, August and December last year. For the first time, children aged between six and nine will also be a part of the sero-survey.

Like in the previous rounds, 10 years to 17 years adolescents, above 18-year adults and healthcare workers (HCWs) will be covered. Dr A. Laxmaiah, head of the Public Health Division at ICMR-NIN and the co-ordinator of the survey, said about 400 subjects will be covered from 10 villages of each of the three districts.

 Hundred HCWs from district hospitals and community health centres will be covered from each district. The IgG antibody-based sero-positivity indicates the extent of spread in the general population.

 According to officials, this help monitor the trends of transmission of SARS-CoV-2 infection in the general population and frontline workers.

The survey findings serve the government in strengthening pandemic control measures and intensify efforts to prevent any surge in positive cases.

“The population-based sero epidemiological studies will help us determine the burden of COVID-19 infection at the community level. For this purpose, we are actively working in association with the Telangana State government,” said Dr Hemalatha R, Director, ICMR-NIN.