Noida lab tests samples of parliamentarians for Covid-19Updated: Sep 21, 2020, 23:16 IST
Noida’s National Institute of Cancer Prevention and Research (NICPR) in Sector 39A is testing samples for Covid-19 of all MPs attending the ongoing parliament session that kicked off on September 14.
Members of both Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha need to mandatorily undergo Covid-19 testing through reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) tests—the gold-standard for testing for coronavirus testing— before entering the parliament for the ongoing monsoon session.
The Noida lab, which was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on July 27 through video conferencing, has tested a total of nearly 60,000 samples so far. Dr Shalini Singh, director, NICPR said that the institute’s lab is now also testing samples of parliamentarians after they are collected by health officials in Delhi. “We are conducting RT-PCR tests for the lawmakers here. Our laboratory is equipped with 12 RT-PCR machines and four automatic RNA extractors. The lab has a capacity to test 7,000 samples in a day,” she said.
“We also conduct tests of dengue and other viral diseases here. But since testing for Covid-19 is a top priority these days, we are mainly focusing on RT-PCR tests,” she said.
Ashwini Kumar Choubey, Union minister of state for health and family welfare, said PM Modi had inaugurated the laboratory a video conference along with similar laboratories in Mumbai and Kolkata. “These are high-output laboratories which use either a single high-functioning machine that can test high volumes of samples or multiple machines to increase capacity and help increase testing capacity multifold,” he said.
He further said that the biosafety level-2 laboratory, with a capacity of testing up to 7,000 samples daily, will not only help in ramp up testing in Noida, but will also facilitate testing in other neighbouring districts.