Good news: Tamil Nadu’s seropositivity rate jumps from 29% to 70%

Chennai and Coimbatore appear well prepared with seropositivity at 82% and 71% respectively

Devotees perform ritual on the occasion of Mahalaya Amavasya, at Kapaleeswaran temple in Chennai, on October 6. Pic: PTI

Here’s a news that should make people of Tamil Nadu feel much more confident of tiding past the possible third COVID wave — Seventy per cent of state residents have COVID-19 antibodies.

The results came from a serosurvey conducted between July and August this year. This is a big relief since the last serosurvey, which happened in April, had shown that only 29 per cent of the state’s population had the antibodies.

Seropositivity is a measure of antibodies present in the body that provide protection against the coronavirus.

The first survey, conducted in October/November 2020, showed a seropositivity rate of 32 per cent.

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This time, Chennai and Coimbatore appear well prepared for any future crisis as the two top cities reported seropositivity at 82 per cent and 71 per cent respectively. Virudhunagar district though gave the best numbers with 88 per cent population having the antibodies.

Health Secretary Dr J Radhakrishnan told NDTV that the higher number of antibodies among residents of Tamil Nadu indicate improved natural immunity among patients who recovered from the infection during the second wave.

Districts which recorded an antibody count of less than 60% — Karur, Nilgiris, Ariyalur and Perambalur – are under the health department radar. Vaccination drive has been intensified in these districts now. The lowest seropositivity was recorded in Karur district (51 per cent).

At least 64 per cent of the state’s eligible population (above 18 years of age) has received at least one dose of the vaccine. Overall, 5 crore vaccine doses have been administered.

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