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Tuesday, August 04, 2020

UT testing lesser than others, lagging behind Panchkula, Mohali

Till Wednesday evening, Chandigarh conducted a total of 12,468 tests.

Written by Hina Rohtaki | Chandigarh | Published: July 23, 2020 10:00:54 am
UT testing lesser than others, lagging behind P’kula, Mohali Doctors in Chandigarh have been advising random testing in belts from where COVID cases are being reported. (Photo: Deepak Joshi)

Chandigarh is among the lowest when it comes to testing COVID cases. According to the Government of India’s data on COVID, a total of 9,794 tests per million (as of 17 hours ago) have been conducted. It specifies, “For every one million people in Chandigarh, 9,794 people were tested.” Population here is 11,79,000.

Puducherry that has a population of 15.04 lakh people too has better testing with tests of 21,588 people per million. Puducherry has conducted a total of 32,000 tests till July 21.

This is despite having one of the best medical institutes. Doctors in Chandigarh have been advising random testing in belts from where COVID cases are being reported. Despite capacity of up to 1,000 tests every day, Chandigarh has been testing on average 200 to 300 people only.

Till Wednesday evening, Chandigarh conducted a total of 12,468 tests.

According to the data, there has been a growth rate of average 3 per cent in infections every day in Chandigarh.
When asked, UT Adviser Manoj Parida said, “WHO norms are 120 tests per million per day. We are doing double or three times than that. Today there were 700 or more tests.”

Doctors feel if testing is ramped up every day, the situation in the city will be controlled on time, else those not being tested will act as super spreaders and the situation will get out of control later.

WHY CANT zERO PREVALENCE STUDY BE done IN CHANDIGARH?

Dr Uttam Thakur, president of Association of Resident Doctors, wondered why Chandigarh, which boasts having the best and innovative practices, can’t get the Sero prevalence study done on the lines of Delhi.

“Testing and tracing is the key as of now. But I don’t know why are they not testing? There is nothing they should be proud of because they too know that they are not testing at all the way others are doing. At least they can follow the Delhi model. Why can’t they get the same Sero prevalence study conducted here?” asked Dr Thakur.

He added, “Yet again I reiterate they should carry out random sampling in 10 belts every day to know if there is a community spread. In public interest, they should go ahead with ramping up testing.”

A PGI professor requesting anonymity said, “I don’t understand why they fear testing. When they have the capacity to test, they can go ahead with it. They should understand that even two people roaming around with COVID and going undetected are risky for a significant number of people who will further spread it. Random testing in different belts should be carried out.”

PANCHKULA AND MOHALI BETTER THAN CHANDIGARH

Districts like Panchkula and Mohali too have done better in testing than Chandigarh. Panchkula has conducted 16,211 tests now while Mohali has conducted about 21,000 tests.

Wherever a positive case is being reported, Panchkula is going ahead with random
testing.

In Panchkula, where a positive case came in a group housing society, the officials conducted random testing of members of the entire society.

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