Updated: April 22, 2020 9:52:41 pm
With an aim to collect samples of suspected COVID-19 cases from the rural areas of Ahmedabad district, and save them from exposure to the infection in urban areas, Ahmedabad district authorities on Wednesday launched a customised mobile testing van.
The van, carrying lab technicians, will be taken to different taluka centres in the district and collect samples of suspected patients of COVID-19. These samples will then be submitted to the testing facility at BJ Medical College in Ahmedabad city.
The van was launched by Ahmedabad District Development Officer (DDO) Arun Mahesh Babu at the Ahmedabad District Panchayat office. An official government release stated that Ahmedabad is the first district in the state to provide such a van for its rural population.
While COVID-19 cases are on the rise in Ahmedabad city and the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) is taking steps to contain the same, the release added, the district administration is taking preventive steps to ensure that the virus does not spread in the entire district and the testing van is part of this effort.
Quoting DDO Babu, the release said that two lab technicians in the van may simultaneously collect the samples of two persons while maintaining a safe distance.
Speaking to The Indian Express, Babu said that the district health administration had already conducted three surveys in which the suspects were identified. Now, those suspects who are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 — such as influenza like illness (ILI) and severe acute respiratory infection (SARI) — will be brought to the concerned taluka centre by health officials, and their samples will be taken from the spot. Hence, the rural population will be saved from going to urban centres to get themselves tested, which in turn will reduce their chances of contracting the infection, he said.
The DDO further said that to save time, the mobile testing van will be accompanied by another logistical vehicle — containing viral transport media (VTM) — which will leave for the testing facility in Ahmedabad city once the samples are collected from a particular spot.The district administration plans on completing the collection of all suspected cases by the end of the lockdown period on May 3, the DDO added.
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