According to Zhandarbek Bekshin, a chief sanitary officer of Almaty, city authorities are planning to test people for collective immunity of COVID-19.
As the official noted, the new enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (or ELISA) will be added to ongoing PCR testing in the city. Several labs in Almaty are already making these assays.
As a result of collective immunity studies, the health system officials might get all necessary information to make a projection on how the disease can be changed in the future and to be prepared to respond with relevant epidemiologic measures.
“Once we have ELISA test results, the information about antibodies, we would be able to assess the level of the herd immunity in our society. And then we would be able to make a projection on a scale or intensity of a possible outbreak in the future,” Bekshin said.
Earlier, Kamalzhan Nadyrov, head of the Almaty health system, said that the situation with COVID-19 and pneumonia in Almaty is much better than before. However, the city still reports the biggest number of coronavirus cases in Kazakhstan.
ELISA assay is the laboratory diagnostic tool to detect the presence of a ligand (commonly a protein), viruses, bacteria, etc in a liquid sample using antibodies directed against the protein to be measured. The ELISA assay might be conducted if the doctor suggests that the patient has an infection or wants to measure the concentration of a certain hormone.
The ELISA assay is a highly effective test with the minimal human factor involved. The vast majority of advanced test systems and chemical agents for ELISA is made by industrial method.Therefore, the assay can guarantee the exact outcome.
The main biomaterial for ELISA assay is a blood serum and the labs have to draw blood from the patient’s vein to get it in a clear form. If there is no lack of chemical agents and the lab's work goes well, the patient can receive the result in one to two days after the patient gives a blood sample. In urgent cases, though, this period can be squeezed to two or three hours.