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ICMR new advisory allows 'On-Demand' COVID-19 testing

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New Delhi, Sep 05: The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has released a revised advisory on COVID-19 testing protocol, permitting testing on demand but also said that states can adopt the advisory with modifications if required.

ICMR new advisory allows On-Demand COVID-19 testing

The modified guidelines recommended by the national COVID-19 task force advised testing on demand for "all individuals undertaking travel to countries or Indian states mandating a negative COVID19 test at the point of entry".

"If an individual develops symptoms following a negative RAT (Rapid antigen tests), an RT-PCR test should be done," reads the nodal body's new list of guidelines- "Advisory on Strategy for COVID-19 Testing in India''.

"100 per cent people living in containment zones should be tested by rapid antigen tests, particularly in cities where there has been widespread transmission of the infection," the advisory underlines.

The new advisory has recommended that all individuals living in containment zones should be tested by rapid antigen tests, especially in cities where there has been a widespread transmission of the infection.

The health research body also insisted that no emergency procedure such as deliveries should be delayed due to lack of tests, and pregnant women should not be referred for a lack of testing facility.

Also, the existing recommendations related to testing for COVID-19 have been extended, elaborated and divided into four parts -- routine surveillance in containment zones and screening at points of entry, routine surveillance in non-containment areas, hospital settings and testing on demand -- and choice of test (RTPCR, TrueNat or CBNAAT and rapid antigen tests.

The fresh list comes as India - the third worst-hit country by the pandemic- passes 4 million coronavirus cases.

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