The Yogi Adityanath government has brought down the rate of Covid-19 RT-PCR tests.

The rate for the test in the private labs has been reduced from Rs 1,600 to Rs 700, which is among the lowest in the country. The labs have been allowed to charge Rs 900 per RT-PCR test if they collect the sample from the patient’s home. The rates are inclusive of GST.

According to an order issued by Additional Chief Secretary, Health and Family Welfare, Amit Mohan Prasad, any lab charging more than the prescribed rate would face penal action under the Epidemic act.

The Delhi government had earlier brought down the rate of Covid-19 testing through RT-PCR from Rs 2,400 to Rs 800.

The Uttarakhand government, too, had reduced the rate from Rs 1,600 to Rs 850 and Rs 900 (for home collection).

“The rates have been revised in public interest in the wake of the increased demand,” said Prasad.

The move brought relief to people in the high-burden districts like Lucknow, Gautam Buddha Nagar, Ghaziabad, Meerut, Kanpur, besides non-Covid-19 patients and also professionals who need to get themselves tested for work purposes, particularly for inter-state travel.

The move will also aid the government’s campaign for Covid-19 surveillance, say health department officials

Prior to this, the state government had reduced Covid-19 testing rates from Rs 2,500 to Rs 1,600 on September 10.

Later on, it allowed private labs to add collection charges. In the beginning of the pandemic, the rate of RT-PCR test at private lab was Rs 4,500.

On October 30, the state medical education department had announced that patients suffering with thalassemia and hemophilia will not have to pay anything for Covid testing.

The testing of their attendants would also be done free of cost.

The government also reduced the rate of Covid-19 testing for cancer and kidney patients on dialysis to Rs 300. For patients of all other illnesses, it was fixed to Rs 600.

The decision was meant for all medical institutions and colleges like the Sanjay Gandhi Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences, King George’s Medical University, Ram Manohar Lohia Institute of Medical Sciences and others.