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ANSWERED ON:  23.07.2021
COVID-19 Sero survey
Dhanush M Kumar
Vijay Kumar Dubey
Arvind Ganpat Sawant
Gajanan Chandrakant Kirtikar
Ganesan Selvam
C.N. Annadurai
Gautham Sigamani Pon
Rebati Tripura
Will the Minister of

HEALTH AND FAMILY WELFARE be pleased to state:-

Will the Minister of HEALTH AND FAMILY WELFARE be pleased to state:
(a) whether the Government is planning a nationwide COVID-19 sero survey to determine the prevalence of Coronavirus antibodies in the community and if so, the details thereof;
(b) the details of States/Districts to be covered under Sero survey and the time by which it is likely to be started and completed;
(c) whether the Government has also asked states to carry out their own localised surveillance exercises to assess the prevalence and spread of infection and if so, the details thereof;
(d) the details of the data of Sero Survey conducted so far along with the total number of blood samples of individuals tested;
(e) the outcome of the Sero Survey conducted till date and the action taken by the Government on the Sero Survey; and
(f) the other steps taken by the Government to stop the spread of Corona Virus in the country?

(a) & (b): Four rounds of COVID-19 National sero surveys have been conducted by ICMR to determine the prevalence of Coronavirus antibodies. ICMR conducted the fourth round of COVID-19 National sero survey between 14th June, 2021 and 6th July, 2021 to estimate sero prevalence among children aged 6-17 years, adults and health care workers. The survey was conducted in the same 70 districts from 20 States and one Union Territory selected during the previous three sero surveys. The details of districts and states are given in Annexure.
(c): Many states and cities have conducted sero surveys. Metropolitan cities such as Delhi, Mumbai, Pune, Chennai, Ahmedabad and Hyderabad have reported sero prevalence ranging between 17.6% and 56% at different time points.

(d): Details of four rounds of National sero survey conducted are as follows:
Round Period Enrollment (No. of individuals) Population- weighted
Sero prevalence
First Round 11th May to 04th June, 2020 28000 0.73%
General Population (adults)
Second Round 17th August to 22nd September, 2020 29082 6.6%
General Population aged>=10years
Third Round 18th December, 2020 to 06th January, 2021 35983 24.1% (General population aged>=10 years)

25.6% (Health Care Workers)
Fourth Round 14th June, 2021 to 06th July, 2021 36227 67.6% (General population aged>=6 years)

85.2% (Health Care Workers)

(e): The sero prevalence estimates from the surveys has helped to track the extent of spread of infection in age groups and geographical locations (such as districts, rural/urban areas) over time as well as guide the response. The results of the sero survey were widely disseminated to the respective state and district authorities.

(f): Health is a state subject, Government of India has provided the required technical support and has also supported the States through logistic and financial support to further strengthen the existing health infrastructure.
Some of the ongoing initiatives include:
• Government of India, to supplement the hospital facilities has roped in tertiary care hospitals under ESIC, Defence, Railways, paramilitary forces, Steel Ministry etc. Further, many large temporary treatment facilities were established by DRDO to manage surge in COVID-19 cases in the country.
• Due to concerted actions of Central and State Governments, the isolation bed capacity and ICU bed capacity which was only 10,180 and 2,168 before the first lockdown (as on 23rd March 2020) is being enhanced continuously and is currently at 18,21,845 isolation beds and 1,22,035 ICU beds (as on 20th July 2021).
• The daily liquid medical oxygen (LMO) production, which was about 5700 MTs per day in August 2020 increased to a high of 9690 MTs as on 13th May 2021. This was done by enhancement of LMO production in steel plants as well as in other LMO plants.
• A system for real-time monitoring of oxygen production in steel plants and distribution of oxygen to States/UTs was also put in place. Restrictions were imposed on industrial use of oxygen.
• A dynamic and transparent framework for allocation of medical oxygen in consultation with States/UTs and all the stakeholders such as relevant Ministries, manufacturers/suppliers of liquid oxygen etc. has been prepared.
• Online digital solutions viz. Oxygen Demand Aggregation system (ODAS) and Oxygen Digital Tracking System (ODTS) have been developed to ascertain the demand for medical oxygen from all medical facilities and to track their transportation.
• In order to avoid wastage of medical oxygen, guidelines on rational use of oxygen were issued on 25th September 2020, and further revised and disseminated to States on 25th April 2021.
• 1,02,400 oxygen cylinders were procured in April and May of 2020 and distributed to States. Further orders for additional 1,27,000 cylinders have been placed on 21st April 2021, (54,000 jumbo cylinders (D type) and 73,000 regular cylinders (B type). Deliveries of the same have started and 24,207 (24,511 B-type and 8,893 D-type) cylinders have been delivered as on 7th July 2021. In addition, around 4962 B-type and 1895 D-type cylinders are in-transit.
• To generate oxygen at the health facility level, PSA plants are being established in hospitals, especially in far flung areas enabling the hospitals to become self-sufficient in generation of oxygen for their needs and thereby, reduce the burden on the medical oxygen supply grid across the country.
• Further, to fast-track the availability of Medical Oxygen in rural and peri-urban areas, more than 18,000 Oxygen Concentrators have been allocated to various States.
• Remdesivir manufacturing capacity was augmented from 38 lakh vials per month to nearly 122 lakh vials per month. In addition, 40 additional manufacturing sites were approved by the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO), thus increasing the manufacturing sites from 22 to 62.
• All States/UT and State Drugs Controllers have been requested to verify stock of the drug and check other malpractices and take effective steps to curb hoarding and black marketing of Remdesivir.
• States are supported by providing free vaccine doses for coverage of vulnerable people and 18+ population.
• Ministry of Health & Family Welfare continues to provide technical guidance for managing various aspects of COVID-19. So far more than 150 guidelines/advisories/SoPs/plans have been provided to States/UTs.
• ‘India COVID19 Emergency Response and Health System Preparedness package’ and Rs 15,000 Cr was provided under the package in April 2020 with an objective to prevent, detect and respond to the threat posed by COVID-19.
• In addition, ‘India COVID-19 Emergency Response & Health System Preparedness Package: Phase-II’ has also been approved by the Cabinet with Rs 23,123 crores (with Rs. 15,000 Cr as Central Component & Rs 8,123 as State component) and is to be implemented from 1st July 2021 to 31st March 2022. It includes support to State/UT level for ramping up Health Infrastructure including those in rural, tribal and peri-urban areas closer to the community, providing support for procurement of drugs and diagnostics to enhance service delivery at district and sub district levels for management of COVID-19 cases (including pediatric care) and for maintaining a buffer of drugs, support for IT Interventions such as implementation of Hospital Management Information System and expanding access to tele-consultations in all districts, and support for capacity building and training for all aspects of management of COVID-19.
• India had only one facility at Pune to do the testing in January 2020, with test, track and treat as the objective. The testing network has been enhanced to 2764 testing centre (Govt- 1291, Private-1473) as on 21st July 2021.
• The Availability of Indigenous COVID testing kits have been enhanced and till date 1371 kits have been validated by ICMR with 505 indigenous kits approved for testing.
• Under ‘Mission COVID Suraksha-the Indian COVID-19 Vaccine Development Mission’, being implemented by Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council (BIRAC), a Public Sector Undertaking (PSU) of Department of Biotechnology (DBT), 5 vaccine candidates in advanced stages of development are being supported. All vaccines under development and manufacturing are also being studied for effectiveness against emerging Variants of Concern (VOCs). Further, facility augmentation and technology transfer for augmented production of Covaxin are also being supported.

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