New Delhi: The Union Health and Family Welfare Minister Harsh Vardhan has launched a mobile laboratory called Infectious Disease Diagnostic Lab (I-lab) for COVID-19 testing which can be deployed in rural areas and help in promoting last-mile testing. The mobile I-lab can run 50 reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and about 200 enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) tests in a day.

A double set of machines can help increase the capacity to about 500 tests per day in 8 hours shift, the union health and family welfare minister said.

The Department of Biotechnology (DBT) under the Ministry of Science and Technology along with the Andhra Pradesh Med-tech Zone (AMTZ) has initiated DBT-AMTZ COMManD (COVID-19 Medtech Manufacturing Development) consortia to address the shortage of critical healthcare technologies in India and move progressively towards a stage of self-sufficiency.

Notable, AMTZ is Asia’s first medical equipment manufacturing ecosystem, uniquely dedicated for medical technology and supported by various ministries.  

The ministry said that the number of government labs has also been increased to 699 whereas now 254 private labs are authorised for testing samples for Covid-19. Cumulatively, 953 testing labs are operational across India for this purpose.

These labs have collectively tested 1,65,412 samples in the last 24 hours. The total number of samples tested thus far is 62,49,66, said the MoHFW’s note. The number includes 540 RT PCR-based testing labs, 340 TrueNat-based testing labs, (325 of the government and 15 private) and 73 Cartridge-based nucleic acid amplification test (CBNAAT)-based testing labs (including 25 government-run and 48 private).

During the last 24 hours, 7390 COVID-19 patients were cured. A total of 1.94 lakh patients, so far, have been cured of COVID-19. The recovery rate rises to 52.96%. At present, 1.60 active cases are under medical supervision.