The health department is expected to carry out Covid-19 tests in busy areas such as Sector 17 (pictured here) and Elante Mall.(HT Photo)
The health department is expected to carry out Covid-19 tests in busy areas such as Sector 17 (pictured here) and Elante Mall.(HT Photo)

Covid tests in Chandigarh markets with high footfall

Teams deployed will request salespersons and shop owners besides customers in the markets to get tested
By Amanjeet Singh Salyal
UPDATED ON NOV 10, 2020 10:26 PM IST

Random Covid-19 testing will now be done in markets with high footfall ahead of Diwali, UT health department officials have said.

UT health officials marshalling resources for the testing said five teams would be going to the markets to do everything possible to stop eventualities of super spreading events in the markets.

The UT has witnessed a surge in Covid-19 cases since the onset of November after a decline in October.

Cases and deaths peaked in September.

“The teams deployed will request salespersons and shop owners besides customers in the markets to get tested. We have started the process and covered a few peripheral markets. In the next few days, the focus will be on the main markets, including Sector 17 and Elante Mall. The schedule will be prepared a day before,” said Dr VK Nagpal, UT joint director, health department.

In the last one month, random samples collected by the department have had positivity rates of around 3%, with 101 infections detected in 3,000 tests through rapid antigen kits.

So far, people from the market areas have not come forward for voluntary testing.

However, a large number of people turning up at dispensaries had been tested. “The health department vehicles do not attract many people in the markets. However, people coming in dispensaries are encouraged to undergo tests. So sampling in dispensaries is also important to keep the testing numbers above 1,000 in a day,” said a senior health official.

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