District admin to issue certificates for every negative rapid antigen test

The chief secretary also reiterated ICMR guidelines and asked the district administrations to get RT-PCR tests mandatorily conducted on all symptomatic persons who test negative in the antigen detection tests.
A medical professional collects a swab sample from a woman to test for COVID-19 infection at Swami Parmanand Prakritik Chikitsalaya Yoga & Anusandhan Kendra in West Vinod Nagar, New Delhi.(Raj K Raj/HT PHOTO)
A medical professional collects a swab sample from a woman to test for COVID-19 infection at Swami Parmanand Prakritik Chikitsalaya Yoga & Anusandhan Kendra in West Vinod Nagar, New Delhi.(Raj K Raj/HT PHOTO)
Updated on Jun 20, 2020 02:12 AM IST
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Hindustan Times, New Delhi | By

People whose samples return negative after being tested using the rapid antigen method will be issued a certificate from respective district administrations, senior government officials said on Friday.

Delhi chief secretary Vijay Dev on Friday issued directions asking all 11 district magistrates to start handing out such certificates to everyone who tests negative. The chief secretary also reiterated ICMR guidelines and asked the district administrations to get RT-PCR tests mandatorily conducted on all symptomatic persons who test negative in the antigen detection tests.

Prodded about the rationale behind the move, senior government officials did not have a clear answer. But some of them said that the move will help them track and trace those who test negative in the first antigen test for follow-up tests, if needed, in the coming weeks.

“The Union ministry of home affair (MHA) has asked the Delhi government to issue certificates to those who test negative in the antigen tests. It was recommended by the expert committee, led by Dr VK Paul of the NITI Aayog. We are following the order in totality,” said a senior government official.

Another official in the health department of the government said that the certificate is also meant to create awareness that the antigen detection test is not a fully confirmatory test, like the RT-PCR tests, which is considered gold standard in Covid-19 testing programme.

As many as 193 centres across Delhi started antigen testing from Thursday. On the first day, of the 7,040 people who took it, 456 tested positive.

Rapid antigen detection tests are quicker than RT-PCR Covid tests.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Sweta Goswami writes on urban development, transport, energy and social welfare in Delhi. She prefers to be called a storyteller and has given voice to several human interest stories. She is currently cutting her teeth on multimedia storytelling.

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