Assam to have 4 more labs; eyes 5000 COVID tests per day

GUWAHATI: Assam is poised to have four more laboratories for conducting COVID-19 tests by the first week of June, state Health and Family Welfare Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma informed on Wednesday.

As it is, with the surge in the number of COVID-positive cases over past couple of weeks, the state health department is now determined to ramp up facilities to conduct at least 5000 tests per day.

“We will have four laboratories, including one at Jorhat and Diphu, by June 7. The Guwahati Medical College Hospital will have its second COVID lab by June 4. With the addition of the four labs, we should be able to conduct 5000 to 6000 tests per day,” Sarma said.

The seven ICMR-accredited government labs are currently conducting close to 2500 COVID tests per day. Till last Sunday, Assam had conducted close to 60,000 tests to go past Kerala, a state known for its healthcare excellence.

Meanwhile, the 108-bed Sonapur District Hospital, which has been converted into a COVID-19 hospital, became operational from Wednesday with the admission of nine COVID-19 positive patients.

The health minister visited the hospital and supervised the admission of the first batch of patients.

The number of active COVID-19 patients has gone up to 705 by Wednesday evening.

Sarma reiterated that the state was gearing up to accommodate up to 5000 patients at a time in the dedicated COVID-19 hospitals.

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