Punjab Government on Saturday completed a milestone in its fight against coronavirus, with the total number of RT-PCR tests crossing the 20,000 mark. Meanwhile, the state has geared up to add more lab and testing facilities in the days ahead.
The capacity has been increased by the Medical Education Department and the Health Department. It has helped the state scale up it's testing to 1500 a day, which Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh has further directed to be ramped up to 6000 a day by mid-May, to cope with the rush of migrants and other Punjabis expected to return home in the coming days.
The increased testing has led to an exponential increase in the Tests Per Million, said ACS Vini Mahajan (IC and DGR&PG). She said that the state had tested 10,000 samples by April 25, and thereafter successfully conducted an additional 10,000 tests in just 7 days to complete 20,000 tests by May 2.
To further increase the testing capacity in the State, a proposal has been sent to the government of India to set up 4 new labs in the District Hospitals at Barnala, Roopnagar, Ludhiana, and Hoshiarpur. Additionally, a proposal to procure 15 TruNaat machines has been moved, and the State is also considering to start the CBNaat testing in Patiala and Faridkot, said Mahajan.
The Department of Health & Family Welfare has also set up 225 Flu corners across the state in District Hospitals (DH), Sub-Divisional Hospitals (SDH), Community Health Centres (CHCs) and Primary Health Centres (PHCs), for the purpose of enhanced surveillance. Of these, 225 Flu corners, 22 DH flu corners, 41 SDH, 45 CHCs and 3 PHCs in the state are collecting samples for RT-PCR testing.