Covid-19: RT-PCR test to cost ₹299 in Gurugram
The state government slashed the price of the Reverse Transcription Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR), considered the gold standard test to detect Covid-19, to ₹299 in the state, as per an order issued by the state health department on July 15. The order was released by the district health department on Tuesday.
It is for a seventh time that the health department has revised the testing cost, fixing separate rates for samples given directly at the lab and those collected from homes.
Testing of samples at private hospitals or accredited diagnostic labs certified for Covid-19 testing will cost ₹299, while for home collection, the price has been capped at ₹499. Until now, one had to pay ₹499 to get tested in a private facility and ₹699 for home collection, as per the rates fixed in the first week of January 18.
Dr Virender Yadav, the chief medical officer for Gurugram, said, “All private labs have been directed to charge the new testing rates. Action will be taken against if there is any complaint related to overcharging by labs.”
The costs of other tests to detect the presence of SARS-CoV-2 virus in the body, such as antigen test ( ₹350) antibody test ( ₹250), TrueNat ( ₹1,250) and CBNAAT ( ₹2,400) continue to remain the same.
The RT-PCR testing charge was first slashed on June 16, 2020, from ₹4500, which was the upper limit fixed by the Indian Council of Medical Research in March 2020, to ₹2,400. In 2020, the test cost was reduced to ₹1,600 on August 29, to ₹1,200 on October 2 and ₹900 on October 29.
On Tuesday, as per the district health bulletin, over 2,720 RT-PCR tests and 791 rapid antigen tests were administered. Even as the test positivity rate, the proportion of positives out of the sample tested, is nearly 0.1%, the health department is conducting around 3,000 tests a day.
According to the health bulletin, seven new Covid-19 cases were reported on Tuesday. The active case count stands at 70, while the total tally is 180,810. No Covid-19 death has been reported in the last 11 days, with the toll at 919 in the district.
First dose inoculation suspended
The health department suspended the administration of first dose vaccines on Wednesday due to a vaccine shortage. Only the second dose will be administered at 42 government vaccination centres.
At least 200 doses of Covaxin will be given at four health centres in Tigra, Chauma, Badshahpur and Manesar, and 250 doses at Candour tech space in Sector 48. At least 100 doses of Covishield, each, will be available at the remaining sites. Also, 100 doses of the Sputnik V vaccine will be given at the Sector 31 polyclinic.
On Tuesday, about 15,085 vaccine doses were administered, of which 8,523 were at government health centres and 6,562 at private hospitals.