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Combating COVID-19: Punjab decides to screen one million people

[#item_author]Punjab Health Minister Balbir Singh Sidhu during a video conference meeting to discuss ways and means to contain the spread of COVID-19. Photo/ANI

Chandigarh (Punjab) [India], April 9 (ANI): Punjab has decided to launch rapid testing drive to screen one million people, said state’s Health Minister Balbir Singh Sidhu on Thursday, adding that modalities are also being worked out for large scale manufacture of PPE kits in the state.
Health Ministers of Punjab, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, and Puducherry through video conference late last evening, also shared the best practices adopted in their states to contain the spread of COVID-19.
According to an official statement, they agreed upon the need to scale up tracing and testing.
Punjab Health Minister Balbir Singh Sidhu appraised his counterparts that Punjab has ramped up testing capacity ten-fold with the procurement of requisite machines.
“Punjab intends to launch a rapid testing drive aiming to screen one million people,” he said.
Gearing up for this, acquisition of 10 lakh Rapid Testing Kits (RTK) has been approved by the Punjab Cabinet and order for requisition of one lakh kits from ICMR has been placed.
Besides, the testing capacity of Viral Research Diagnostic Labs (VRDL) in the Government Medical Colleges at Patiala and Amritsar has been increased. Approval for testing at GMC, Faridkot, DMC and CMC in Ludhiana has also been sought from the Government of India, he added.
The Punjab Health Minister informed that modalities are being worked out for manufacturing PPE kits at Ludhiana which once operational would enable Punjab not just to meet its own requirement but would have sufficient kits to supply to other states. (ANI)