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ADK confirms 125 frontliners 'positive for antibodies'

Ahmed Aiham
20 September 2020, MVT 15:22
The exterior of the ADK Hospital. The hospital found that roughly 6 percent of highly-exposed individuals to the virus had antibodies present in their system. PHOTO: HUSSAIN WAHEED / MIHAARU
Ahmed Aiham
20 September 2020, MVT 15:22

ADK Hospital, on Friday, revealed that tests of 125 individuals, out of a sample body consisting of over 3,000 frontline workers, successfully confirmed the presence of antibodies.

Antibody testing, or serology testing, determines whether an individual has developed antibodies against COVID-19 after having being infected with the virus in the past.

According to ADK, which began antibody testing on July, from upwards of 90,000 frontline workers in the country, roughly four percent tested positive for the COVID-19 virus.

ADK further noted that six percent of individuals, who were highly exposed to the virus, contained antibodies in their system. From the 412 persons tested within the health sector, seven percent confirmed the presence of antibodies.

Similarly, six percent of tests conducted from the 1,257 individuals picked from among companies and office staff, also showed antibodies.

The tests were conducted among persons that have not previously been tested for COVID-19 through a PCR test.

ADK has compiled a report based on the diagnostic results and has since forwarded it to relevant institutions. In order to gain a clearer picture of the COVID-19 infection in the country, the hospital emphasized on the importance of antibody testing and to base research on such findings.

In late July, the Ministry of Health urged against conducting antibody tests for COVID-19.

The ministry stated that antibody tests were not included under the measures listed in the current surveillance and response strategy.

Maldives currently records a total of 9,649 virus cases of which 1,422 are active cases, in addition to 8,188 recoveries and 33 deaths.

During last month, authorities tightened the safety measures implemented in the Greater Male' region, following an alarming upsurge of COVID-19 cases after the state initiated efforts to steer the country towards a 'new normal' with the phased easing of lockdown restrictions.

As one of the most densely populated cities in the world, Maldives' capital Malé continues to record a significant number of COVID-19 cases, similar to the first weeks following the first confirmed local transmission on April 15.

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