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COVID-19: High court seeks AAP govt stand on plea against Rs 800 price cap on RT-PCR tests

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New Delhi, Dec 11: The Delhi High Court Friday sought the AAP government's response on a plea challenging its decision fixing a cap of Rs 800 on RT-PCR tests for detecting COVID-19 infection in the national capital.

AAP

Justice Navin Chawla issued notice to the Delhi government and sought its stand on the plea by an Association of Practising Pathologists which has contended that the price fixed would not cover the cost of consumables to be used in the test.

The association also contended that the price cap cannot be made applicable to TrueNAT and CBNAAT tests, which are also used to detect COVID-19 infection, as they use cartridges which are very expensive. The Delhi government, represented by its standing counsel Ramesh Singh and additional standing counsel Gautam Narayan, told the court that the price cap was not applicable to CBNAAT and TrueNAT tests as these are different from RT-PCR.

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The court also noted that the three tests are not common and hence a common price cannot be fixed for them. RT-PCR, short for Reverse Transcription Polymerase Chain Reaction, is a laboratory technique widely used in the diagnosis of genetic diseases and to measure gene expression in research.

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    Cartridge-based nucleic acid amplification test (CBNAAT) is a recently introduced polymerase chain raction (PCR) based method for detection of TB. TrueNat is an indigenously developed portable version of CBNAAT and was also meant for detecting tuberculosis (TB).

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