The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has released new guidelines for the testing procedure of coronavirus infected patients. It said all people living in containment zones should be tested using rapid antigen testing (RAT) kits, especially in the cities that are badly affected by the coronavirus outbreak.
The guidelines also recommended testing on demand for all individuals undertaking travel to other countries or Indian states mandating a negative COVID-19 test at the point of entry.
The states, however, can use their discretion to modify the approach, the advisory said.
“If an individual develops symptoms following a negative RAT (Rapid antigen tests), RT-PCR test should be done,” the guidelines said.
“100 per cent people living in containment zones should be tested by rapid antigen tests, particularly in cities where there has been widespread transmission of the infection,” it said.
The guidelines further said that no emergency procedure should be delayed for lack of tests, and pregnant women should not be referred for a lack of testing facility.
The ICMR has also listed measures to priortise methods of testing.
“For routine surveillance of containment zones, antigen tests should be first priority for routine surveillance of non-containment zones, RT-PCR tests should be first priority,” the guidelines said.
For hospital settings, RT-PCR tests should be first priority. For “testing on demand”, state governments can decide modalities, it added.
Yet another highest single-day surge in the coronavirus cases has been recorded in India on Saturday as 86,432 cases of coronavirus was recorded taking the caseloads past 40-lakh mark.
As per the Union Health Ministry website, the total number of cases stands at 40,23,179, which is not far behind Brazil, the world’s second-worst coronavirus-affected nation.