200 people to be tested for every 10 lakh: Sudhakar

200 people to be tested for every 10 lakh: Sudhakar

Medical Education Minister K Sudhakar on Monday said all those who have come in contact with Covid-19 patients will be subjected to testing, regardless of whether or not they have symptoms of the virus infection. 

“It has been decided to prepare for testing a minimum 200 people for every 10 lakh population,” Sudhakar told the Assembly, where Covid-19 came up for discussion. 

Sudhakar said Karnataka has seven labs - three in Bengaluru and one each in Kalaburagi, Hassan, Shivamogga and Mysuru. “All other Indian states have maximum 2-3 labs,” he said.

The minister admitted that the testing capability was less. “Till date, we have done nearly 1,500 tests and every lab can do 80-100 tests daily,” he said. “The testing rate is low because the reagent has to come from ICMR only. Reagents are imported from Germany. Because there's so much demand, the supply of reagents is slow,” he said. 

“But we are not happy with the current level of testing. Our aim is to be able to conduct one lakh tests. But there are technical problems and we are working to ensure we get reagents faster. We’re also working with the private sector,” he said, adding that Biocon, the Indian Institute of Science and Tata Institute among others had come forward to help with testing. 

According to Sudhakar, the government’s approach to tackling Covid-19 was made up of three Ts - tracing, testing and treatment. “Those who are tested positive don’t have to be hospitalized. That’s not the line of treatment. Those aged 30-40 years may not develop any symptoms even after 15 days, except for maybe mild cold. And then they recover,” he said.

He strongly defended measures taken by the government, even as the Opposition Congress attacked the ruling BJP for allowing scores of international passengers into the state and not subjecting them to tests.

“From March 20 to 22, a total of 3,116 international passengers have come. In the month of March, a total of 1,22,532 have entered the state through the Bengaluru and Mangaluru airports. This is the highest number of passengers screened by any state,” he said. 

The government is doing “everything we can” and “there’s been no lapse from our end,” he said. “We are working from 5 am to 12 pm and no stone has been left untouched.”

 

Medical Education Minister K Sudhakar: 

Those who are tested positive don’t have to be hospitalized. That’s not the line of treatment. Those aged 30-40 years may not develop any symptoms even after 15 days, except for maybe mild cold. And then they recover.

 

 

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