Rs. 4.41 crore sanctioned for establishing the four laboratories

The Tamil Nadu Government has sanctioned funds for establishing molecular virology laboratories at four government medical college hospitals across the State, including at Coimbatore Medical College Hospital (CMCH). This follows an announcement made by Chief Minister Jayalalithaa in the Assembly during May 2013.

A virology laboratory is vital to provide early diagnosis for viral-infected cases of dengue, chikungunya, influenza and similar diseases. Confirming these diseases swiftly will enable doctors to commence appropriate treatment expeditiously.

Official sources told The Hindu here on Thursday that with Government Order (No: 305, dated December 23, 2013) sanctioning Rs. 4.41 crore for establishing the four laboratories, construction was likely to commence by the Public Works Department (Medical Wing) soon, after a suitable location was identified.

Each laboratory will be staffed by three technical assistants and will have equipment worth nearly Rs. 50 lakh. The Tamil Nadu Medical Services Corporation will purchase and install all the equipment.

Sources said that the CMCH had three laboratories at present: biochemistry, microbiology and pathology. While the microbiology laboratory was currently conducting tests for bacteria, virus and parasites, a virology laboratory would be devoted exclusively for virus, which will enable quicker diagnosis.

Conducting studies on virus

This new laboratory will also be utilised for conducting studies on the virus after it was isolated from blood samples. At present, such a virology laboratory was available only at the King Institute at Guindy, Chennai.

The laboratory will also be used to develop viral diagnostic expertise and to disseminate viral diagnostic services to the public at large.

The other hospitals to get this laboratory are Rajiv Gandhi Government General Hospital, Chennai, Tirunelveli Medical College Hospital and the Government Rajaji Hospital, Madurai.

PWD Medical Wing

The PWD Medical Wing, established last year, was created exclusively for constructing hospitals and other health institutions. It had nearly 30 per cent of the total PWD workforce and liaised with the Health Department.

More In: Coimbatore