Search
+

    Telangana holds private labs responsible for a spike in Covid-19 cases

    Synopsis

    Telangana reported 985 fresh Covid positive cases on Friday night, taking the total to 12,349 and of conducting 4,374 tests over the last 24 hours to take the total tests to 75,308 so far. While 4,766 persons were discharged to date, the state suffered 237 Covid deaths.

    Agencies
    Representative Image
    HYDERABAD: Amid concerns over ‘high positives-low testing’ scenario in Telangana, coupled with temporary suspension of tests at government labs, the Telangana government has found a fault with the private labs, holding them responsible for the sudden spike in cases and high positives.

    Casting scathing remarks on the testing protocols, human resources, infrastructure, and infection control measures at the private labs, the Telangana government said it suspects ‘contamination of samples’ at the private labs leading to high positivity rate and disparity in numbers.

    This comes days ahead of the scheduled inspection by a central health ministry team after several red flags were raised and censure from the Hyderabad High Court. West Bengal, Gujarat, and Maharashtra have recently ramped up testing after the visits of central teams that raised concerns over high positives-low testing scenario in those states.

    Telangana had India’s highest positive rate at 27.7% and the country’s lowest number of tests per million population at a mere 14,690 from June 10-23, while Hyderabad recorded India’s second-highest positive rate at 32.1% on June 23, after Mumbai at 33%.

    Four teams comprising microbiologists and senior Telangana health ministry officials inspected all the 16 private labs and found “a lot of discrepancies” in the data uploaded by the private labs, said Telangana government in a Friday night statement.

    Accusing some labs of not having the trained staff and of not following “measures for quality control and validation of tests”, the Telangana government suspected some labs of pooled testing leading to reporting all as positives without doing individual testing.

    “It is also suspected that there is (a) possibility of contamination of samples leading to high positivity rate because safety measures and protocols are not followed meticulously,” said the Telangana health ministry, adding that some labs resorted to pooled testing, resulting in “some negative cases also being shown as positive.”

    The government said it will study all such cases with the help of experts “using the amplification plots generated by RTPCR machine” to check the veracity of the reports being uploaded by the private labs.

    While threatening to initiate ‘stringent action’ against the errant labs “for violating the norms and not following guidelines,” the Telangana government accused the private labs of giving “false positive reports.”

    Further, the Telangana health ministry also accused the private labs of conducting tests “for walk-ins” and collecting samples from different places in Hyderabad. According to it, the “government guidelines very clearly state that only symptomatic cases and patients admitted in hospitals should be tested and they are also not following ICMR Guidelines.”

    The Telangana government has also accused the private labs of reporting less than half the tests they had conducted, which has resulted in a high positivity rate, “which is actually less if the number of all tests done is uploaded.”

    Telangana reported 985 fresh Covid positive cases on Friday night, taking the total to 12,349 and of conducting 4,374 tests over the last 24 hours to take the total tests to 75,308 so far. While 4,766 persons were discharged to date, the state suffered 237 Covid deaths.
    (Catch all the Business News, Breaking News Events and Latest News Updates on The Economic Times.)

    Also Read

    3 Comments on this Story

    Kanth King37 days ago
    ALok industries is the best bet since Reliance is taken over and they are manufacturing more than 2 Lakh PPE kits everyday to counter CHINA.. MADE in INDIA stock..
    Guru Nathan38 days ago
    Since the stage is defective he could not deliver good lecture!
    Sameer 38 days ago
    Someone needs to be blamed so it is.....
    The Economic Times