State’s daily testing capacity goes up to 400

SHILLONG: The state government has ramped up its capacity for RT-PCR test while it has 529 dedicated beds for treatment of COVID-19 at hospitals and health centres besides 21 ICU beds.
Replying to the motion on the government’s overall preparedness post lockdown during the re-assembled budget session of the Assembly on the third and concluding day on Friday, Chief Minister Conrad Sangma said that since Thursday the capacity for RT-PCR test has been enhanced.
“We are now able to do 400 RT-PCR tests per day. At the same time, we can do up to 2000 RT-PCR pool testing on a single day”, he said.
Appreciating the vast improvement in the testing facility in the state, he said that the government’s protocol and system have greatly helped.
“We have registered people for the last 25 days now”, he said adding early planning had helped.
He also informed that the government has put in place a three-layered testing system for the returning state citizens to ensure that it is foolproof.
According to him, they would be first screened by the thermometer followed by rapid diagnostic test and finally the RT-PCR test.
“Only if all the three tests are negative will a person be allowed to go for either community or home quarantine”, he said.
Later while speaking to a group of newsmen, he informed that all the 1404 people, who returned from Bangalore on Thursday, are under observation and all of them have undergone the rapid test.
“The samples for the RT-PCR test are being collected. Only after three or four days we will get the results. We will send them to the corona care centres if they are positive, but if they are negative they will be sent either to community or home quarantine,” he said.
Dedicated COVID beds
Meanwhile, the government said there are 529 dedicated COVID beds at hospitals and health centres across the state besides 21 ICU beds.
Laying a statement on a call attention motion by Congress MLA Mayralborn Syiem on the state’s preparedness for ‘Amphan’ and COVID-19, Sangma informed that there are 2247 beds in quarantine centres, including 474 in East Khasi Hills, while there are 896 beds — 369 in East Khasi Hills — in the corona care centres. In the 11 districts, there are only 21 dedicated COVID ICU beds, including 13 in East Khasi Hills, two in South Garo Hills and six in West Garo Hills.
According to the statement, the state has 20 ventilators, 73 BIAP machines, distributed 1,58,228 PPE kits, 6,30,000 three- ply masks and 2,06,086 N-95 masks.
He said that the government has put in place a three-pronged strategy to deal with the pandemic giving priority to breaking the transmission chain, building the capacity of communities to deal with the situation and improving health infrastructure.
He said that individuals and families who are under quarantine are continuously monitored by the health team and geo fencing technology is being used to ensure quarantine protocols are strictly followed.
It was also informed that around 7000 COVID-19 management committees have been constituted.

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