Chandigarh’s PGIMER to train 31 medical colleges in region for starting Covid-19 testing facility
The institute has been given the responsibility of increasing the capacity for Covid-19 testing in all the government and private medical colleges of Ladakh, Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh and UttarakhandUpdated: Apr 28, 2020, 22:08 IST
The Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER), Chandigarh, which is providing the Covid-19 testing facility to the tricity and adjoining districts of Punjab and Haryana during the times of crisis, has been identified as a mentoring institute by the Indian Council of Medical Education and Research (ICMR), New Delhi, and the ministry of health and family welfare (MoHFW), Government of India (GoI).
Under this, the institute has been given the responsibility of increasing the capacity for Covid-19 testing in all the government and private medical colleges of Ladakh, Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh and Uttarakhand.
A total of 31 medical colleges with no Covid-19 testing facilities need to be strengthened in collaboration with the state governments by assessing their infrastructure, space, staff, expertise, equipment and reagents as testing requires sophisticated molecular laboratory set-up with proper bio-containment facility.
On the directions of PGIMER director Jagat Ram, a core committee has been constituted for giving approval to the labs of these medical colleges to start the Covid-19 testing facility.
A professor from the PGI’s virology department, Mini P Singh, has been appointed as the principal coordinator for the establishment of these Covid-19 testing facilities. Department head RK Ratho is also a member of the core committee.
A total of 40 lab personnel including senior faculty members from various medical colleges and medical institutes had also received trained in the department of virology at PGIMER from April 4 to April 26. The department is also providing diagnostic services for testing around 200 samples per day for Covid-19.
The training for real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing kits was imparted along with quality management system as the department of virology is WHO-accredited national measles laboratory for molecular and serology testing.
Previously also, the department had conducted hands-on -training for Government Medical College and Hospital (GMCH-32) and Institute of Microbial Technology (IMTECH) for Covid-19 testing. In the first phase, additional labs of Command Hospital and Civil Hospital, Panchkula, have been trained, thus preparing the tricity to meet an increased demand for testing.
Under the guidance of ICMR, a total of 7 labs have been given green signal to initiate the Covid-19 testing and two are under process of getting approval in the first phase. For the second phase, gap analysis has been done and the help of state governments will be taken to establish the facilities of Covid-19 testing and subsequently training will be provided.