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48 crore Covid tests across the country till date: Govt | India News

VISAKHAPATNAM: The Union minister Bharathi Pravin Pawar informed the Parliament on Tuesday that 48.17 crore Covid 19 tests have been performed across the country till date since April of last year.
He said that the tests were conducted in 2838 ICMR-approved testing laboratories in which include 1742 RT-PCR labs, 946 TrueNat labs, 131 CBNAAT labs and 19 other Molecular-Nucleic Acid testing platforms.
The minister elaborated on a query raised by the YSRCP Rajya Sabha member V Vijayasai Reddy, by saying that the sensitivity of rapid antigen tests (RAT) is less than RT-PCR. So the ICMR had recommended that all symptomatic individuals who test negative by RAT must be tested by RT-PCR.
The minister said that support had been provided to states and also union territories by providing 485 RT-PCR machines and 225 RNA automated extractors for strengthening the RT-PCR infrastructure.
“ Apart from this, 20 high throughput RT-PCR labs have been established. The indigenous TrueNat machines deployed for TB testing were repurposed and more machines were added for Covid 19 testing. Even validation of TruNat test for Covid 19 testing was undertaken on an expedited basis,” Pawar said.
He further added that GeneXpert machines deployed for TB testing were repurposed for covid testing. Closed RT PCR systems approved by USFDA like abbott ID Now and others were approved and permitted for use in India.
“All medical colleges across the nation have been mandated to have a molecular virology setup as a prerequisite for certification by the medical council of India. This resulted in on-boarding of nearly all government and private medical colleges for covid testing,” the minister said.
As per the data, the highest tests in AP were conducted in the month of June 2021 as it had conducted 18,43,906 RT PCR and 12,49,275 Antigen tests. AP has conducted more tests from July 2020 to December 2020 and showed the highest tests in the month of March 2021.
AP had enhanced the number of the tests and it had gone peak in June and July months of 2021. Andhra Pradesh government conducted 3.45 lakh RT-PCR tests and 17,914 Antigen tests in August month till date.

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