SRINAGAR: The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), the top medical research organization is the conducting the third round of national sero-survey for COVID-19 titled ‘National sero-surveillance to monitor the trend of SARS-CoV-2 infection transmission in India: Community-based surveillance’ across 60 districts and 10 hot-spot sites among all states and union territories of the country to see the changing trend of population response to SARS COV-2 infection over these months since the second round was held in July-August this year where the prevalence of IgG antibody titres was found 27.3% among the general population in the Pulwama district.
In the third round, the data will again be collected through app-based and blood samples will be taken to assess immunoglobulin-Gamma (Ig-G) against SARS-CoV-2 which will determine infection in recent past and the body’s immune response to the SARS CoV-2 infection. Each selected site collects data and blood samples of 400 participants of children over 10 years and adult population and also shall include 100 health care workers in the district Pulwama.
ICMR is conducting the study through its regional centres, however, the Director-General ICMR & Secretary, Department of Health Research, MOHFW, Government of India Dr Balram Bhargava again asked Government Medical College, Srinagar to conduct the study in Pulwama district on its behalf for which it has communicated to Chief Secretary J&K, financial commissioner, health & medical education department, J&K and mission director JK NHM.
A team from Government Medical College Srinagar comprising faculty, resident doctors and medical interns from Department of Community Medicine (SPM) are deputed by Dr Samia Rashid, principal/ dean, GMC Srinagar for conducting the survey in ICMR assigned ten clusters and selected sub-district hospitals in district Pulwama with full support and cooperation from Deputy Commissioner Pulwama Dr Raghav Langer, Chief Medical Officer, Pulwama Dr Hassina Mir and health teams including Epidemiologist Dr Arshad, BMOs, doctors, laboratory technicians and other paramedical staff at district level while ICMR Headquarter New Delhi, and its premier centres including National Institute of Epidemiology (NIE), Chennai is providing support in training, guidance, testing, data management, analytics and logistics support, said Dr S. Muhammad Salim Khan, HOD Community Medicine, GMC Srinagar and nodal person for ICMR national ser-survey for COVID-19 of district Pulwama. The blood samples will be sent to ICMR lab at Chennai.
In the first two rounds of ICMR serosurvey, the sero-prevalence in district Pulwama was found to be 2% and 27.3% respectively while the recent study by GMC Srinagar in district Pulwama in October showed prevalence risen to 43.1% among the general population, highest among 10 districts in Kashmir division. This time the sero-prevalence of SARS CoV-2 Infection is expected to be more than previous outcomes.