Jamshedpur, March 22: State health department is gearing to ramp up testing facility following corona virus spread. Principal health secretary, Nitin Madan Kulkarni, said that the state’s lone testing facility for Covid-19 at viral research diagnostic laboratory (VRDL) at MGM Medical College and Hospital in Dimna, Mango attempts are being made to increase testing facilities in the state.
“We have plans that VRDL facility at MGM Medical College will soon have another RT-PCR (reverse transcription –polymerase chain reaction) machine in addition to the existing machine. We also discussed about increasing manpower including lab technicians and scientists at the facility. Soon we will have testing facility for Covid-19 at PMCH in Dhanbad, RIMS in Ranchi has already applied for permission from ICMR and we are expecting it to be functional in a week.
We also have asked Tata Main Hospital which has a state-of-the-art microbiology unit to apply with ICMR for Covid-19 test” said Nitin Madan Kulkarni. East Singhbhum deputy commissioner Ravi Shankar Shukla informed that the nearly 1000-bed Tata Main Hospital will soon be having RT-PCR facility and has already applied for ICMR nod to start testing for Covid-19 cases. In a directive issued yesterday to fight the spread of the novel coronavirus, ICMR saying all hospitalised patients with severe acute respiratory illness, shortness of breath and having fever and cough will now be tested for COVID-19 infection.
The new ICMR guidelines also said asymptomatic direct and high-risk contacts of a confirmed case should be tested once between day 5 and day 14 of coming in his/her contact.“We have issued to all the hospitals (government and private) to inform through our district surveillance unit about any hospitalized cases having breathing distress,” said Kulkarni. Significantly, the VRDL facility at MGM Medical College can efficiently conduct viral test using RT-PCR technique for 40 samples daily.The principal secretary also informed that so far none of the samples have turned positive in the state and also expressed satisfaction at the quarantine centers arrangement in the district.