With the government statistics stating 1 lakh people have recovered from COVID19 infection till date, the figures appear miniscule before the data about infections and recoveries revealed by the latest sero-positivity study carried out across Kashmir.
The official bulletin on COVID19 on Tuesday put the number of infections reported in J&K till date at 1,07,330. Of these, 1,00,322 patients have already recovered, the bulletin said. J&K has been carrying out intensive testing and till date 28,56,746 tests have been carried out across the two divisions of J&K. However, the number of officially confirmed positive cases is much lower than the revelations of the sero-surveillance study carried out by GMC Srinagar earlier this month. As per the survey, 26 lakh people in Kashmir division had already recovered from the infection and had antibodies for SARS-CoV2. Of these, a miniscule section had been tested and found positive, the data states.
In Kashmir division, the number of positive cases confirmed till date is 64,505. Of these, 59,974 have recovered. Prof S Saleem Khan, head department of social and preventive medicine at GMC Srinagar, who headed the sero-survey said the study findings were clear that for every detected case, there were 40 that were missed. "Mostly because a majority had no symptoms," said Prof Khan.
He said that prevalence of antibodies in the blood samples of the population studied from across the 10 districts of the division was indicative of a widespread infection in the community. This, he said, called for increased vigil to protect the vulnerable population. "There is nothing that can tell us whether the person we are meeting is carrying the virus," he said while underlining the importance of maintaining distance, wearing masks and ventilating the spaces where people are assembling or frequenting. "COVID19 deaths are a reality and we continue to lose our loved ones," he said.
On Tuesday, six people from Kashmir division and four from Jammu division were reported to have lost lives due to COVID19. In Kashmir, three of the deceased belonged to Srinagar district. These were all men – a 60-year-old from Shuhama admitted at SKIMS Soura, a 69-year-old from ZainaKadal admitted at Chest Diseases Hospital and a 79-year-old from Tengpora admitted at SKIMS Medical College Hospital Bemina.
A 60-year-old man from BogundKulgam admitted at GMC Anantnag also succumbed to the viral illness on Tuesday besides a 64-year-old man from Imam Sahib Shopian admitted at District Hospital Pulwama and a 70-year-old woman from Uri Baramulla admitted at SKIMS Soura.
On Tuesday, 253 people from Kashmir division and 178 from Jammu division were reported positive. In Kashmir division, Srinagar reported 84 cases, the highest among all districts here. In Jammu division, district Jammu had a spike and reported 122 cases today, the highest in J&K.
Currently, 5357 cases are active across J&K. Of these 732 are admitted in hospitals for treatment.