By Bizodisha Bureau, Bhubaneswar, September 27, 2021: About 73% of Odisha’s population and over 93% health workers have developed antibodies against SARS-CoV2, according to a recent sero-survey conducted by Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) in 12 of the state’s 30 districts between August 29 and September 15.

Experts from ICMR, Bhubaneswar, along with the state’s health and family welfare department conducted the serosurvey in the districts of Sambalpur, Sundergarh, Jharsuguda, Keonjhar, Khurda, Puri, Balasore, Mayurbhanj, Jajpur, Kandhamal, Kalahandi and Nabarangpur.

Sanghamitra Pati, Director of RMRC, Bhubaneswar said, “Of the 5,796 samples collected from the community, it was found that 4,247 have antibodies. Similarly, 1,232 health workers out of 1,312 samples collected have developed the antibodies.”

“We found 73.5% sero prevalence among the community and 93.9% among the healthcare workers,” Pati said, adding that of the 12 surveyed districts, Khurda district has highest sero prevalence of 80%, followed by Jajpur, Mayurbhanj and Jharsuguda (around 68%).

Briefing in the prevalence of antibodies in terms of age groups, the RMRC director said: “Seventy per cent of people in the six to ten-year age group, 74% of 11-18 age group, 75% of 19-44 age group, 72% of 45-60 age group and 66% above 60 years of age have the antibodies.”

Also, in terms of vaccination, around 66.5% had received at least the first dose of vaccine, she said, adding that study also found that 25.6% are fully immunised, 41.4% are partially vaccinated, and 33% are unimmunised. 66.5% adults had received at least one dose of the vaccine and in the study, 25.6% were fully vaccinated, 41.4% partially jabbed and 33% were not immunised against the disease.

Pati said there is no major difference in the sero prevalence and vaccination coverage among urban and rural areas of Odisha. The RMRC survey also revealed that 48% of women have received both the doses of vaccine while its ratio is 45.6% among men.

There is no marked difference in the sero prevalence after vaccination in rural and urban areas of the state. While 72.7% sero prevalence was detected among rural population, it was 73.7% among urban people. Similarly, there is no difference in antibodies in men and women. There was also no difference in developing antibodies after taking Covaxin and Covishield vaccines, the director said.

Director of Health Service, Dr Bijay Mohapatra, said that the possible third wave of the pandemic may not cause much damage in the state as over 73% of the population has already developed antibodies against Covid-19.

On Monday, Odisha saw 444 new Covid-19 cases and five more deaths, as the state’s tally reached 1,024,764 and the death toll climbed to 8,180, officials said.

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