In a bid to contain the further spread of the virus in the state, the Rajasthan government has begun rapid testing for the COVID-19 infection with the help of newly-acquired rapid antibody testing kits. These new kits will expedite the testing time and detect carriers or superspreaders of the deadly Coronavirus who could infect the others.
The health department in Rajasthan is going beyond random sampling to detect carriers of the COVID-19 virus who pose a risk to others. After acquiring 10,000 rapid testing kits on Friday, 52 samples were tested all of which tested negative. On Saturday, 5000 tests were conducted in the walled city and other areas. With these kits, more than 500 samples can be taken in a day and test results are known in 15-20 minutes.
The Indian Council of Medical Research has also advised antibody tests in hotspots of the coronavirus which will ensure faster detection of cases and give more time to authorities to contain community spread. Once a person tests positive after the antibody test, the PCR test has to be done to confirm the result.
The nodal officer for COVID-19 prevention in Jaipur district Ajitabh Sharma informed that, the random sampling done in clusters in Ramganj to detect COVID-19 cases has shown that 6 to 10 percent of people are infected and to prevent the spread of the virus; the focus is on identifying the asymptomatic carriers who can spread it further. The government has identified superspreaders such as provision store owners, dairy booth owners, milk suppliers and health workers and random tests will be carried out on them to find if any of them is a superspreader, he added.
Rohit Singh, additional chief secretary, health had said on Friday that 5000 rapid tests would be done in Ramganj on Saturday in addition to the ongoing PCR based tests. This will help us in the ongoing containment exercise as the people who test positive will be quickly isolated to prevent further spread, he added.