GUWAHATI: The fourth nation-wide serological survey to be conducted by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) will cover three districts of Assam—Kamrup Metropolitan, Udalguri and Karbi Anglong. The serological survey is conducted to assess the prevalence of Sars-CoV-2, the virus that causes coronavirus disease (Covid-19) in the society. The upcoming survey will be conducted in 70 districts across the country. Apart from the general adult population, blood samples will be collected from children aged 6 years and above to conduct the survey. In the previous serological surveys children were not included.
"The upcoming serological survey will focus on detecting the presence of antibodies in individuals against the virus. At this stage the antibodies seen could be because of not only infection but also vaccination. Since there are reports that the possible third wave of Covid-19 might hit the children, the fourth survey will include children aged 6 and above," an expert working for the ICMR said.
The earlier serological surveys suggested that a significant size of the population was still susceptible to catching the viral infection, and India was far from achieving herd immunity.
ICMR chief Balram Bhargava has already written a letter to the State Chief Secretary Jishnu Barua asking him to prepare for the fourth serological survey and also to include children above six years in the list of respondents.