Keeping in view the need to establish more laboratories in the network of medical colleges in India to test for infectious diseases like Covid-19, the board of governors of Medical Council of India has amended the minimum requirements for medical colleges to set up biosafety level 2 testing facilities.
In an order passed by the Board of Governors in Supersession of MCI, the body amended the minimum requirement, whereby all medical colleges with annual admissions of 50 to 250 students have to establish BSL 2 testing facility, which is the minimum requirement to conduct tests of infectious diseases like Covid-19 and H1N1 flu.
“The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India… dated June 2, 2020, has amended approval to amendment made to Minimum Standard Requirements for 50/100/150/200/250 MBBS admissions annually regulations for inclusions of BSL2 level laboratory testing facility for infectious pathogens in the Department of Microbiology in All Medical Colleges. This may be treated as most urgent and important in view of COVID19 pandemic,” the order states.
The order comes after an ICMR decision taken on April 4 inviting all private and government medical colleges to fast-track Covid-19 testing scale-up. The ICMR had designated 14 centres of excellence across the country, delegated with the responsibility of mentoring medical colleges.
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