Scientists at the Regional Medical Research Centre (RMRC), Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) on Monday said the serological survey to be conducted in Assam’s Dibrugarh will help to ascertain the actual number of people infected by Covid-19 in the district.
The RMRC in collaboration with the Dibrugarh district health department and National Health Mission (NHM) will conduct a serological survey to assess the prevalence of SARS CoV2 antibody among people in the district.
The study is part of a special initiative by the Dibrugarh district administration and will be funded by the Oil India Limited.
This is the first time in that a district administration in Assam has untaken such a study, which was formally launched on Monday.
RMRC-ICMR, (Scientist-E), Biswajyoti Borkokoty said, “The study will enable us to know the actual number of people already infected by the Covid-19 virus and help us to define how to move forward.”
“We will collect blood samples from people in 30 rural and 30 urban clusters of the district for the study,” he said.
The study will examine 1200 samples, with 20 from each cluster.
Dibrugarh Deputy Commissioner Pallav Gopal Jha said, “The survey will help us to get an idea of the seroprevalence of SARS CoV2 antibody among the population and help us to prepare in an equipped manner for the next phase to fight Covid-19.”
“We have targeted to complete the study and prepare an analysis by the first week of January next year to know the status of Covid-19 transmission in the district,” he said.
Similar surveys undertaken in other states of India have revealed the actual number of Covid-19 infected people to be ten times more than those detected by the state health departments.
Principal of the Assam Medical College and Hospital, Saneeb Kakoti said that the survey reflects the actual picture of the prevalence of Covid-19 cases as the district has seen very few positive cases from tea gardens and slums.