Assam to conduct rapid tests on suspected COVID patients from April 22


GUWAHATI: Assam will start ‘rapid tests’ on suspected COVID-19 patients from April 22, a move that will speed up the process of sample tests for coronavirus and trace infections in a few minutes.

Assam health and family welfare minister, Himanta Biswa Sarma on Monday said that the state has received the first installment of 9600 rapid test kits from the Centre and that the process of using the kits for tests would start from Wednesday.

“We will be procuring another 50,000 rapid test kits soon as we will need much more. According to Indian Council of Medical Research, the rapid test kits will help ascertain whether one is COVID positive or negative in just 15 minutes. Besides, contact tracing will become easier as the kits can also ascertain since when the person has been infected with the virus,” Sarma said.

“As of now we are sending 50 kits to Spanish Garden (the apartment which has been declared a containment zone), 25 kits to the Athgaon Kabarsthan Masjid (where Markaz attendees had assembled/stayed) and 250 kits to Lahorighat in Morigaon district (from where some had tested positive) for random testing,” he said.

The rest of the kits would be kept in the medical colleges and civil hospitals of the state for random tests when doctors suspect patients to be infected with the virus, the minister said.

Sarma further announced that with the virus case load decreasing, the medical colleges and civil hospitals, barring MMC Hospital, will be opened for general patients from April 24.


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