The government on Wednesday informed the Delhi High Court that one in four of the 15,000 people tested in the latest serological survey appears to be infected by COVID-19.
According to the latest report of the fourth round of sero survey carried out in the national capital, which was placed before a bench of Justices Hima Kohli and Subramonium Prasad, the central district of Delhi has seen an increase of more than double in the rate of infection as compared to the data of the survey carried out in September. The latest report has found that COVID-19 antibodies were present in 25 per cent of the persons tested.
Under the survey conducted between October 15 to October 21, 15,015 people were tested and the prevalence of antibodies was found to be slightly higher in females at 26.1 per cent as compared to males -- 25.06 per cent -- and also comparatively higher -- at 29.83 per cent -- in participants of more than 50 years of age, reported the Hindustan Times.
The report recommended that since Delhi was continuing to report an increase in COVID-19 cases and is yet to reach its peak, therefore, further sero surveillance should be paused till the numbers stabilize after which it can be resumed. The survey also found that diabetes mellitus was observed to be a risk-factor for subclinical infection.
The report further stated that in the July and August rounds of the serosurvey, living in a containment zone was significantly associated with being seropositive. "However, during the September and October round, the observed seroprevalence was lower in the participants who had ever lived in containment zones," it said.
The report was placed before the Delhi High Court during the hearing on a PIL seeking increase in the COVID-19 testing numbers in the national capital and getting speedy results.
The Delhi High Court Wednesday pulled up the AAP government for relaxing norms for public movement and gatherings even as COVID-19 cases were increasing with no household "left untouched", and sought to know if it had any policy or strategy in place to deal with the "alarming" situation.
It also noted that as per the latest sero survey report of the government the presence of antibodies was detected in 25 per cent of the people tested, indicating that one in four persons has been infected by COVID-19.
"No household has been left untouched," the bench said, referring to the survey data and questioned as to why the Delhi government was relaxing norms in such a situation when other similarly placed states were bringing in restrictions.
It directed the Delhi government to file a status report explaining steps taken by it in the last two weeks, when the COVID-19 cases have risen alarmingly, to contain the spread of the infection and listed the matter for further hearing on November 19.