Amid the Novel Coronavirus crisis in the country, a team of scientists from the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) on Thursday visited AIIMS's National Cancer Institute (NCI) at Jhajjar in Haryana, to conduct the field validation of Chinese manufactured rapid antibody testing kits. The validation is being done after some States complained that the kits are showing wide variations in results and low accuracy rates.
As a result to the complaints, the ICMR advised all States not to use rapid testing kits for two days and wait for further directions from the ICMR. The rapid antibody tests would be on the blood samples of COVID and non-COVID patients to learn the trend, a senior scientist from ICMR informed ANI.
A senior scientist from ICMR told ANI: "We have started the field validation of rapid antibody test kits, which we received from China. A group of scientists has gone to the NCI, Jhajjar, to do the field validation. This rapid antibody tests would be on the blood samples of COVID and non-COVID patients to learn the trend."
According to the ICMR scientist, one needs to watch for false negative and false positives as well. "Hence one needs to include negatives as well," added the scientist."We will also collect data from other States to assess the scope and extent of the utility of these rapid antibody tests in field conditions of our country and will keep advising the States," said the ICMR officials, adding that States must do vigorous RT-PCR as the principal diagnostic tests to contain the spread of the virus.
Meanwhile, on Wednesday, the ICMR had directed all state governments to follow the fresh protocol for using a rapid antibody test. A senior doctor at AIIMS, Jhajjar, said: "As on to date, we have at least 200 COVID-19 positive and COVID-19 suspected patients. About 70 of these patients are COVID-19 positive, including a five-year-old child."
(With inputs from agency)