40% ‘Undercounting’ of Daily Covid Cases in Delhi NCR in April: Survey

Nearly half of COVID positive cases covered in a survey went unreported in April as many people opted for home antigen testing, LocalCircles claimed. The survey conducted by LocalCircles claimed that 42 per cent of Delhi-NCR residents that had symptoms and took a COVID test in the last 30 days only took the self rapid antigen test. Only one in three respondents covered in the survey from Delhi-NCR took an RT-PCR test in the last 30 days, while the majority opted for at-home antigen testing pointing to a sizable undercounting of daily caseloads, the survey contended.

The survey received 16,000 responses from residents from across the districts of Delhi-NCR. Over 62 per cent respondents were male while 38 per cent were female. “Residents of Delhi and NCR cities of Gurugram, Noida, Ghaziabad, and Faridabad have been writing on LocalCircles how most people in their family, friends are just opting for the at-home antigen test and not even taking the RT-PCR test anymore, it said. Positives from these at-home tests are not reported anywhere and government data do not count them in official case figures, “the LocalCircles claimed. The question in the survey asked, In the last 1 month when you or family members had some symptoms and needed a COVID test (non travel), what type of test did you undertake? In response, seven per cent said RT-PCR several times, another seven per cent said RT-PCR once / twice. Eleven per cent said Rapid Antigen Test multiple times, and seven per cent said Rapid Antigen Test once / twice.

Fifty-seven per cent of respondents, or 9,608, said they did not take any test in the last one month. Data from the 7,248 individuals who confirmed taking the COVID test showed that 17 per cent of them took RT-PCR several times, and 16 per cent took RT-PCR once / twice. Twenty-six per cent took the Rapid Antigen Test multiple times, and 16 per cent took the Rapid Antigen Test once / twice. Around 16 per cent took the Mainly Rapid Antigen Test and RT-PCR test once / twice, while nine per cent couldn’t say which test was taken by them. “With the 42 per cent Delhi-NCR residents who took the at home rapid antigen test post symptoms not being in the official numbers, they are clearly understated by that much,” LocalCircles claimed.

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