A serological survey conducted in three suburbs in India shows that six in ten people living in Mumbai slums have developed antibodies against the new coronavirus. Collectively, that’s 57% of Mumbai slum dwellers known to have antibodies against the SARS-CoV-2 – the highest immunity levels anywhere in the world.
Researchers say that this could explain the steep drop in infections in the area, even as the rest of India is still grappling with the increase in new case infections.
Jayaprakash Muliyil says that Mumbai’s poorest may have unwittingly pursued the herd immunity approach, as it is virtually impossible to do any social distancing in the slums.
This article published by Bloomberg also says that the dip in cases in India’s capital, New Delhi could also be due to growing immunity.
Editor’s Note: Sweden’s infection cases, like Mumbai, have already dipped starting June, and research by Emil Karlsson is saying that this could also be due to growing immunity in the country [read Sweden is winning against the coronavirus]. This means that natural and collective immunity is possible without vaccines.
The Bloomberg article also highlights the importance of allowing the virus to circulate through the population in order to attain natural immunity and reduce deaths.
Moreover, it confirms that lockdowns only served to “postpone” the increase in the number of cases, not eradicate the coronavirus totally. If we ever wish for infections to decline, as well as protect the most vulnerable populations, we must allow the healthy and the young to be infected. At the same time, our hospital systems must be ready to take in patients that may develop complications.