New Delhi: Amid the second wave of coronavirus, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) on Tuesday (May 4, 2021) released an advisory for COVID-19 testing.
The ICMR stated that at present, India’s 2506 molecular testing laboratories are facing challenges to meet the expected testing target due to ‘extraordinary case load‘ and staff getting infected with COVID-19.
“In view of this situation, it is imperative to optimize the RTPCR testing and simultaneously increase the access and availability of testing to all citizens of the country,” the government body said.
The ICMR has so far tested 29,48,52,078 samples.
ICMR recommended six measures to optimize RTPCR testing:
1. RT-PCR test must not be repeated in any individual who has tested positive once either by RAT or RT-PCR.
2. No testing is required for COVID-19 recovered individuals at the time of hospital discharge in accordance with the discharge policy of MOH&FW.
3. The need for RT-PCR test in healthy individuals undertaking inter-state domestic travel may be completely removed to reduce the load on laboratories.
4. Non-essential travel and interstate travel of symptomatic individuals (COVID-19 or flu-like symptoms) should be essentially avoided to reduce the risk of infection.
5. All asymptomatic individuals undertaking essential travel must follow COVID-appropriate behavior.
6. Mobile testing laboratories are now available on GeM portal. States are encouraged to augment RT-PCR testing through mobile systems.
— ICMR (@ICMRDELHI) May 4, 2021
Meanwhile, India recorded over 3.82 lakh new COVID-19 cases and 3,780 deaths in the last 24 hours, as per the Union Health Ministry on Wednesday (May 5) morning.
The country now has a total of 2,06,65,148 COVID-19 cases, of which, 1,69,51,731 people have recovered, while 2,26,188 have succumbed to the virus.
The world’s second-worst coronavirus-hit country recorded more than 3,00,000 new infections for a 14th straight day and now has 34,87,229 active cases.
Twelve states namely Maharashtra, Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh, Kerala, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal, Bihar and Haryana cumulatively account for the majority of India’s total active coronavirus cases.