• Monday, Nov 30, 2020
  • Last Update : 11:31 pm

45% of Dhaka exposed to coronavirus

  • Published at 10:36 pm October 12th, 2020
rmg workers
People wearing mask on Dhaka street Reuters

Another study found evidence that the novel coronavirus arrived in the country in mid-February, though the first cases of Covid-19 in the country were confirmed on March 8

According to a study, 45% of Dhaka residents have developed antibodies for Covid-19, meaning they have already been exposed to the novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2 .

Another study found evidence that the novel coronavirus arrived in the country in mid-February, though the first cases of Covid-19 in the country were confirmed on March 8.

The studies were unveiled in a seminar jointly organized by the Institute of Epidemiology, Disease Control and Research (IEDCR), and the International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease Research, Bangladesh (icddr,b), in Dhaka on Monday. The studies were funded by USAID and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

In his presentation, Mahbubur Rahman, Assistant Professor of epidemiology  with IEDCR, said serology tests have shown that some form of Covid-19 antibodies are present in 45% of the respondents to the study in Dhaka. Of them, the highest proportion were over the age of 60.

He added that the respondents were divided into two broad categories: residents of Dhaka city, and residents of Dhaka slums.

928 persons, including 400 from symptomatic households and 528 from asymptomatic households, were tested thrice over the 28-day research period.

“9.8% people tested Covid-19 positive, with almost no difference between the genders (males 9%, females 10%),” Assistant Professor Mahbubur said.     

6% of the cases were symptomatic and 94% were found to be asymptomatic. 

Of the asymptomatic cases, 12% of the respondents have developed symptoms recently, taking the number of symptomatic cases to 18%.

74% of slum dwellers have developed antibodies

In another presentation, icddr,b Senior Scientist (Infectious Diseases Division), Dr Firdausi Qadri, said although an overall 45% of the respondents were found to have developed some sort of antibodies, the prevalence of antibodies among slum dwellers was found to be at 74%.

For this research, samples were taken from 333 symptomatic people and 359 asymptomatic people in the city, while the sample size for slums was lower, at 125 (36 symptomatic and 89 asymptomatic).

She said: “The encouraging rate of seropositivity suggests the onset of herd immunity.”

Epidemiologist Mustuq Husain said the prevalence of antibodies in over 60% of the population is considered herd immunity.

However, ASM Alamgir, principal scientific officer (PSO) of IEDCR, said the sample size for slum residents is too low to make definitive conclusions.

“We cannot say antibodies alone will build herd immunity. However, antibodies along with vaccination may help develop herd immunity,” he added.

Additional Director General (Planning and Development) for the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS), Professor Meerjady Sabrina Flora, said: “It will take a long time for a Covid-19 vaccine to come to market, so we all have to be careful by wearing masks and following health guidelines, o as not to bring a second wave of Covid-19 in the country .”

Coronavirus arrived in February

IEDCR Director Dr Tahmina Shirin, in her presentation, said genomic analysis has shown that the novel coronavirus likely arrived in the country in mid-February.

She said the study analysed 392 samples (67 collected and 325 deposited at GISAID) from March 8 to July 5. During their analysis, they found that at least 19 distinct SARS-CoV-2 lineages, having mutated, were circulating at the time of analysis.

The IEDCR director added that they took three main lineages as samples for the genomic study, of which B.1.1 and B.1.1.25 had circulated in eight divisions of the country, and B.1.36 circulated in Chittagong only.  

Minister for the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Zahid Maleque, and icddr,b acting executive director Tahmeed Ahmed, also participated in the program, among others.

96
82
blogger sharing button blogger
buffer sharing button buffer
diaspora sharing button diaspora
digg sharing button digg
douban sharing button douban
email sharing button email
evernote sharing button evernote
flipboard sharing button flipboard
pocket sharing button getpocket
github sharing button github
gmail sharing button gmail
googlebookmarks sharing button googlebookmarks
hackernews sharing button hackernews
instapaper sharing button instapaper
line sharing button line
linkedin sharing button linkedin
livejournal sharing button livejournal
mailru sharing button mailru
medium sharing button medium
meneame sharing button meneame
messenger sharing button messenger
odnoklassniki sharing button odnoklassniki
pinterest sharing button pinterest
print sharing button print
qzone sharing button qzone
reddit sharing button reddit
refind sharing button refind
renren sharing button renren
skype sharing button skype
snapchat sharing button snapchat
surfingbird sharing button surfingbird
telegram sharing button telegram
tumblr sharing button tumblr
twitter sharing button twitter
vk sharing button vk
wechat sharing button wechat
weibo sharing button weibo
whatsapp sharing button whatsapp
wordpress sharing button wordpress
xing sharing button xing
yahoomail sharing button yahoomail