540 new cases of the coronavirus infection have been reported in last 24 hours. (Photo Credit: File)
The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has revised its testing strategy for COVID-19 in India to tackle the spread of the deadly disease that has affected around 6,000 people in the country. According to ICMR, - the nodal body for the fight against the virus - people with cough, sore throat, runny nose, and fever in the hotspots will be tested for coronavirus.
“Asymptomatic direct and high-risk contacts of a confirmed case should be tested once between days 5 and day 14 of coming in his/her contact,” ICMR’s revised strategy stated. All symptomatic individuals who have undertaken international travel in the last 14 days will also be tested.
Till now, all hospitalised patients with severe acute respiratory illness, shortness of breath and having fever and cough were being tested for COVID-19 infection.
According to an ICMR official, 1,30,000 samples have been tested for coronavirus so far in the country out of which 5,734 have tested positive. “If we see the positivity rate ranged between 3 to 5 per cent in the last one and half months and it has not increased substantially,” he said.
Meanwhile, 540 new cases of the coronavirus infection and 17 deaths have been reported in the last 24 hours, taking the total number of COVID-19 cases in India to 5,734 and death count to 166.
he Union Health Ministry on Thursday stressed on the rational use of personal protective equipments (PPEs) by healthcare workers treating coronavirus patients amid concerns over their dwindling numbers in the country.
Joint Secretary at the Health Ministry Lav Agarwal said there is no need to panic as India has sufficient stocks of PPEs and the government is making all efforts to augment their supply further.
Addressing a daily briefing at 4 pm to provide updates on the COVID-19 situation, he said that 20 domestic manufacturing companies of PPEs have been developed. “Orders for 1.7 crore PPEs have already been placed with them and supply has already begun,” Agarwal said.