New Delhi: The urban population of Andhra Pradesh is more exposed to the novel coronavirus than the rural population, found the first phase of the sero survey.
The survey, conducted by the state government across four districts of Anantapur, East Godavari, Krishna and Nellore, found seroprevalence higher in all urban areas compared to rural parts.
The survey, accessed by ThePrint, showed that Krishna district has maximum seroprevalence among the urban population (35.2 per cent), followed by Anantapur (28.8 per cent), East Godavari (19.5 per cent) and Nellore (13.8 per cent).
Seroprevalence in the rural areas of Krishna is 14.8 per cent, followed by Anantapur at 12.3 per cent, and East Godavari and Nellore at 11.7 per cent and 5.7 per cent, respectively.
The survey stated that Krishna district (21.7 per cent) is most exposed to the virus, followed by Anantapur (16.7 per cent) East Godavari (14.4 per cent) and Nellore (8.2 per cent).
Sero-surveillance is a trusted standard to measure the level of antibodies in people due to a certain infection.
Nearly 3,750 blood samples were collected from each district between 7-12 August for the survey.
Also read: Delhi sero survey is helpful. Need such surveys across India to plan resumption of economic activity
The results of the survey further showed that the majority of those found with Covid antibodies across the four districts are asymptomatic.
Anantapur topped the chart with 99.5 per cent prevalence among asymptomatic Covid-positive patients, followed by Krishna district at 99.4 per cent, Nellore at 96.1 per cent and East Godavari at 92.8 per cent.
Confirming the results, Dr K. Rambabu, the state Covid-19 coordinator, told ThePrint, “The results were somewhat expected as the range of antibodies was found to be higher in containment zones.”
In Krishna district, which is home to the capital city of Vijayawada, it was found that 21.8 per cent of the people in the containment zones were exposed to the virus, while only 5.1 per cent of the people in non-containment zones were exposed to Covid.
In Nellore district, 8 per cent of the people in containment zones were exposed to the virus, while in non-containment zones, the figure stood at 4.8 per cent.
However, in Anantapur and East Godavari districts, there was not much difference in the prevalence of antibodies in the population living either in containment zones or non-containment zones.
More women exposed to Covid than men
According to the survey, women have been more exposed to the virus in East Godavari and Krishna districts as compared to men.
In Krishna district, 19.1 per cent men and 24.8 per cent women were exposed to the virus. Similarly, in East Godavari district, 13.9 per cent of men and 15 per cent of women have been exposed to the virus.
However, in Anantapur and Nellore, though by a small margin, it was found that a larger population of men have been exposed to coronavirus. In Anantapur, 17.2 per cent men and 15.8 per cent women were exposed to Covid, while in Nellore, the figure for men are women are 8.9 per cent and 7.6 per cent, respectively.
Rambabu said the next phase of the sero survey will be conducted across the remaining nine districts later this week.
“The sample size is bound to be larger, but we are still in the process of finalising the protocol for the next one,” he added.
This report has been updated to remove reference to an incorrect seroprevalence figure attributed to the survey.
Also read: Modelling, testing, sero survey, vaccine — 4 lessons India learnt from 4 months of Covid
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