'ICMR Sending Defective COVID-19 Test Kits': WB Health Department
The West Bengal government said defective kits from the ICMR is the reason for delayed tests.
In a series of tweets, West Bengal's Department of Health & Family Welfare, on Saturday, 19 April, alleged that the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has been supplying defective kits to the state.
Responding to the allegation of conducting less number of tests in the state, the government said defective kits from the ICMR is the reason for delayed test reports. It also said,
"There was no problem earlier when the testing kits were being received directly from National Institute of Virology, Pune".
This comes a few days after The National Institute of Cholera and Enteric Diseases (NICED), ICMR's nodal COVID-19 testing facility in Kolkata, said the state government is not sending enough samples for tests.
"There is a big drop. Last week we didnt even have 20 samples per day. Number of samples being sent is determined by the state government, so if they send more samples, we are able to test more. I think sample collection has not been as per the recommendation. So the number of tests being done in Bengal is also less", its director Dr Shanta Dutta had said.
Responding to Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's complaint about the paucity of testing kits, she said ICMR has dispatched 42,500 kits to NICED so far and that there is no shortage.
According to the state's chief secretary Rajiva Sinha, a total of 4,630 samples have been tested by Saturday and West Bengal is now conducting over 400 tests every day.
(With inputs from PTI.)
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