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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 10  |  Issue : 8  |  Page : 2974-2979

Seroprevalence of SARS-CoV-2 antibodies among healthcare workers in a teaching hospital in Eastern India

1 Department of Microbiology, AIIMS, Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India
2 Department of Community and Family Medicine, AIIMS, Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India
3 Department of Pulmonary Medicine and Critical Care, AIIMS, Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India
4 Department of Hospital Administration, AIIMS, Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India
5 Department of Trauma and Emergency Medicine, AIIMS, Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India
6 Director, AIIMS, Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Baijayantimala Mishra
Department of Microbiology, AIIMS, Bhubaneswar - 751 019, Odisha
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jfmpc.jfmpc_2486_20

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Statement of the Problem: Healthcare workers (HCW) are the most vulnerable group for contracting SARS-CoV-2. Assessment of seroprevalence of SARS-CoV-2 antibodies among HCW, thus can provide important data on pathogen exposure, infectivity, and adherence to personal protective equipment (PPE). The present study aimed at assessing SARS-CoV-2 seroprevalence among HCW and exploring associations with demographics, category of exposure to COVID-19 patients, preventive measures taken and relation with COVID-19 symptoms. Method of Study: HCWs with a minimum gap 2 weeks from last duty were eligible to participate in the study. The enrolled HCW were categorized into high-risk and low-risk category based on work in COVID-19 areas. HCWs SARS-CoV-2 specific IgG and IgM antibodies were detected using rapid immunochromatography test. Results: Out of 821 randomly selected HCWs, either IgM or IgG antibody was detected in 32 HCWs (32/821, 3.9%). Only IgM antibodies were detected in 14 (1.7%), only IgG was detected in 9 (1.0%), and both IgM and IgG antibodies were present in 9 HCWs. Seropositivity was significantly higher in high-risk category (5.7% vs. 2.2.%), HCWs who ever had COVID-19 related symptoms in last 3 months (5.6% vs. 2.8%), and those who had earlier tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 with real-time reverse transcriptase PCR (36.6% vs. 3.5%). Seroprevalence was highest (6.9%) among housekeeping and sanitation staff. Conclusions: Overall, low seroprevalence of SARS-CoV-2 antibodies in our HCWs is an indicator of effective infection control practice. HCW posted in dedicated COVID ward need more stringent implementation of infection prevention measures.

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