Containment measures, immunity behind fall in Covid cases

Containment measures, immunity behind fall in Covid cases
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Containment measures, immunity behind fall in Covid cases 

Highlights

The slide in the number of fresh COVID-19 cases, deaths and positivity rate in Delhi can be attributed to aggressive containment measures, a segment of population achieving immunity and fewer outside patients, experts said on Friday.

New Delhi: The slide in the number of fresh COVID-19 cases, deaths and positivity rate in Delhi can be attributed to aggressive containment measures, a segment of population achieving immunity and fewer outside patients, experts said on Friday. Some of them, however, noted that it is hard to "ascertain the actual position" as many people having mild symptoms have been skipping testing. Suresh Kumar, the medical director of Lok Nayak Jai Prakash Narayan Hospital, Delhi's largest health facility, said authorities have been able to contain the coronavirus spread through aggressive testing and contact tracing.

"More than one crore tests have been conducted in Delhi so far.

On an average, around 60,000 to 70,000 tests are conducted daily. The Delhi government should be credited for its micro-management and planning," he said. The cumulative number of tests in Delhi crossed the one crore mark on January 20. Over 14 lakh tests have been conducted in the city between January 1 and January 21 -- 66,683 tests a day on an average.

However, Kumar said that whether Delhi has achieved herd immunity will be clear once the results of the latest serological survey arrive. According to Dr. Ajit Jain, the nodal officer for COVID-19 at Rajiv Gandhi Super Specialty Hospital, Delhi may have achieved herd immunity already. "The serological-survey conducted in August found that 29.1 per cent of the city's residents have developed antibodies against COVID-19.

Besides, 35 per cent of the population is aged below 18 and is almost immune to the disease," he said. Exposure to viruses causing common cold can also provide partial immunity against the coronavirus.

This is called "cross-immunity". Around five per cent of Delhi's population is immune to COVID-19 due to this factor, Jain said. Another reason is that Delhi has become a "natural containment zone" due to the farmers' agitation on its border points, he said.

Earlier, a large number of COVID-19 patients from neighbouring states were coming to Delhi for treatment. This number has reduced to a large extent due to the difficulty in travel due to the ongoing protest, Jain said.

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