Sero positivity highest among 10-14 years age group
Geetanjali Minhas | June 28, 2021 | Mumbai
Every other child in Mumbai has Covid-19 antibodies, according to a sero survey of SARS-COV2 conducted on paediatric population, which is feared to be especially vulnerable if and when any third wave comes.
The survey has found that more than 50 percent of the paediatric population in health care settings has antibodies to Covid-19. As per the survey, overall sero-positivity is 51.18%. This includes 54.36% from public sector and 47.03% from private sector settings. Seropositivity is the highest (53.43%) in the age group 10-14 years.
Age wise, the sero-positivity rate of 1-4 years is 51.04%, 5-9 years is 47.33%, 10-14 years is 53.43%, and 15-18 years is 51.39%.
As compared to sero-survey conducted in March 2021 which showed sero-positivity of 39.4% in the under-18 age group, the new findings show that proportion of paediatric population having antibodies has increased.
“There is a notable increase in the seropositivity in the paediatric population to SARS-CoV-2 in this study as compared to serosurvey 3 conducted in March 2021 which showed a sero-positivity of 39.4% in the age group of ≤ 18 years which indicates that a significant proportion of children accessing the healthcare services were exposed to the virus during the second wave of Covid-19. This indicates that a significant proportion of children accessing the healthcare services were exposed to the virus during the second wave of Covid-19,” the BMC said in its statement.
The survey was conducted under directions of municipal commissioner Iqbal Chahal and additional municipal commissioner (western suburbs) Suresh Kakani between April 1 to June 15 jointly BYL Nair Hospital and Kasturba Molecular Laboratory.
Across 24 wards of Mumbai a total of 2,176 blood samples were collected from pathology laboratories including 1,283 from Aapli Chikitsa Network and Nair Hospital of BMC and 893 from network of two private labs.
Blood samples for survey were made available from the samples received in laboratories for various medical investigations and were transported from public and private laboratories to Kasturba Molecular Laboratory.
The sero-survey was conducted jointly by the Department of Micro-Biology and Department of Paediatrics of BYL Nair Hospital and assisted by Director (MEMH) and Dean of BYL Nair Hospital Dr Ramesh Bharmal, Medical Superintendent of Kasturba Hospital for Infectious Diseases Dr Chandrakant Pawar, HoD, Dept of Pathology, BYL Nair Hospital Dr Kusum Jashnani and Associate Professor Dr Gayathri Amonkar.
Investigators from the Department of Micro-Biology included HoD Dr Jayanthi Shastri, Associate Professor Dr Sachee Agrawal, House Officer Dr Gargi Kakani and Professor from Pediatrics Department Dr Surbhi Rathi.
The study has suggested targeted health education and awareness about Covid-19 appropriate behaviour. IEC (information, education and communication) should include the use of social media platforms and including memes, collaborating with social media influencers etc., as well as cartoon advertisements and catchy jingles.
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