ACROSS 99 testing laboratories, Gujarat has a capacity to conduct 72,610 Covid-19 tests, including RT-PCR, TrueNat and CBNAAT, but on an average only 78 per cent is being utilised daily, analysis of data from an affidavit filed by the state government before the Gujarat High Court has found. An average of 57,141 RT-PCR tests were done each day from April 1-23, it stated.
Overall testing, which includes RT-PCR and rapid antigen tests, dipped considerably since April 23 when over 1.89 lakh samples were tested. On May 2, the state conducted only 1.37 lakh tests.
As per the affidavit, from April 1-23, when 98 RT-PCR laboratories were operational, only 39 per cent (or 13.14 lakh) of the 33.62 lakh tests conducted were RT-PCR. Had the full capacity been utilised each day, 16.47 lakh RT-PCR, TrueNAT and CBNAAT tests could have been conducted, it said.
Among the issues that the HC pulled up the Gujarat government for were low testing and low proportion of RT-PCR tests. According to the ICMR, the RT-PCR testing was to comprise 70 per cent of the total tests and the test positivity rate was to be maintained below five per cent. Neither has been complied with.
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