Andhra Pradesh

Now, COVID-19 test at your doorstep in Vijayawada

A health worker collects a nasal swab sample from a woman in Vijayawada.

A health worker collects a nasal swab sample from a woman in Vijayawada.   | Photo Credit: KVS Giri

Private testing for the coronavirus is now available at the doorstep of your home in Vijayawada city. Apollo Diagnostics in a press release on Friday said that it would deploy technicians to homes to collect the samples.

By coincidence, the Andhra Pradesh Government on Friday issued an order fixing ₹2,900 as the upper limit for the fee any lab could charge for conducting a test for the virus in the State.

Apollo is the first standalone private diagnostic laboratory in the State that has been granted permission to conduct tests for the virus in the State. Manipal Hospitals is the only hospital in Vijayawada area that has been granted permission for conducting tests for the virus till now.

Apollo Diagnostics was granted permission by the Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR) on May 29. The Apollo Diagnostics National Reference Lab has NABL and CAP Accreditation, the press release said. Those who want to get tested could go to the lab on D V Manor Road (opposite Manor Food Plaza) or request that the sample be collected from home by calling 040 44442424.

While a fee of ₹4,500 was announced per test, this was reduced to ₹2,900 in accordance with the government order.

Additional charge

A representative of the diagnostic lab said that an additional ₹1,000 would be charged if the same was collected from home. The government order released on Friday did not mention any fee for collection of samples from home. “The cost of samples collected at home was high because temperature needs to be maintained. The government order has not specified any fee for collecting samples at home, but once that was done the fee would be changed,” the representative said.

While people could get themselves tested privately there was no clarity on whether they could go to a private hospital for treatment. While a couple of hospitals procured permission for treating COVID-19 patients and even announced a fee structure, sources said there were few takers.

Even those who get themselves tested in the Apollo Lab would have to report to the health authorities if the tests were found to be positive for the virus.

All persons found to be asymptomatic but have tested positive are currently being sent to Siddartha Pinnamaneni Medical College in Chinnaoutupalli and the NRI Medical College in Chinnakakani. The rest are being treated in the government hospitals.

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Printable version | Sep 26, 2020 8:41:30 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/andhra-pradesh/now-covid-19-test-at-your-doorstep/article31816369.ece

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