Covid-19: Haridwar administration begins rapid testing of migrants workers
With over 300 migrants testing Covid-19 positive in the state so far as per the state health department, this step is being seen as a move to trace the positive patients in a short span so that they can be put in quarantine centres.Updated: May 26, 2020 18:11 IST
Following the recent spike in Covid-19 positive cases with the arrival of migrants in Uttarakhand, the Haridwar administration has decided to conduct rapid antibody test along with the routine and random testing of the symptomatic patients.
With over 300 migrants testing Covid-19 positive in the state so far as per the state health department, this step is being seen as a move to trace the positive patients in a short span so that they can be put in quarantine centres.
Haridwar district reported five new positive cases on Tuesday which included a district hospital staff nurse and two migrants who arrived from Mumbai recently. About ten cases of migrants testing positive have resurfaced in past week in Haridwar.
Rapid antibody testing is being done on a daily basis at Haridwar Mela hospital-based Covid-19 centre and Civil hospital in Roorkee.
The health administration opting for the rapid test is also being linked with the delay in the arrival of reports from three authorised medical labs at Haldwani Medical College, Doon Medical College and All India Institute of Medical Sciences AIIMS, Rishikesh.
According to Haridwar’s chief medical officer Dr Saroj Naithani, rapid test gives result in a short span and if it shows a positive sample, then it is sent to authorised labs for reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test.
A district official pointed that as per Union ministry of health guidelines, rapid tests are recommended for places where a large number of cases are being reported, large gatherings and evacuation centres as has happened with the arrival of thousands of migrants in the state at the base railway station in Haridwar.
Uttarakhand reported 51 new Covid-19 cases on Tuesday, taking its tally to 400, according to the state health department, reports PTI.
Meanwhile, authorities have announced thirteen areas in the district as containment zones, sealing these areas where Covid-19 positive cases have been recorded in the past few days. These zones are Nagla Emarti, Roorkee, Hata Kheri Bhagwanpur, Sati Mohalla, Roorkee, Matawala Mohalla, Roorkee, Mohammedpur-Mohanpura ward no 12, Roorkee, Munda Khera Kalan, Laksar, Durgapur Laksar, Adarsh Nagar, Roorkee, Gram Dabki Laksar, Dadupur Gobindpur, Hazrat Bilal, Landaura, Ambedkar Colony, Mangalore and Green Park Colony, Laksar.
District magistrate C Ravi Shankar said that these containment zones have been sealed with ban on entry or exit, and arrangements for essential services are being made for households there
On May 20, Uttarakhand high court had directed the state government to procure rapid test kits immediately and start testing on an experimental basis at the border points. The HC in its order said that “although rapid antibody test has not been approved by ICMR (Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), which is the nodal agency spearheading the fight against Covid-19 pandemic in the country) for diagnostic purposes, but since the result of this test is available in much less time, such tests can be used for surveillance purposes alone. At least it would be better surveillance than the surveillance by thermal screening.”