Coronavirus update: Centre withdraws rapid testing kits

Delhi HC reins in profiteering in the name of COVID-19

By DTE Staff
Published: Monday 27 April 2020

Government of India April 27, 2020 withdrew rapid antibody tests for the novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2). The Centre earlier positioned 500,000 rapid testing kits purchased initially and 200,000 bought subsequently the most important surveillance tool.

The Indian Council of Medical Research told states on April 27: “ICMR has also evaluated the kits of Guangzhou Wondfo Biotech and Zhuhai Livzon Diagnostics in field conditions. The results have shown wide variation in their sensitivity, despite early promise of good performance for surveillance purposes.” It advised states to stop using the kits and return them to suppliers. It also advised states to continue with the RT-PCR kits. 

A central press release claimed there would be no monetary loss as the kits were not paid for. 

  • The Delhi High Court on April 27, 2020 intervened in a dispute between the distributor and importer of rapid testing kits for the novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) and forced a 33 per cent reduction in prices, according to media reports.   
  • Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Assam had the largest numbers of districts with grave shortages of equipment related to dealing with the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) it emerged at a meeting, the Indian Express reported.
  • Kerala’s Idukki and Kottayam districts — in the green zone — recorded 11 cases positive to the virus on APril 26, 2020. 
  • Three madrasas in Kanpur have emerged hotspots with over 50 students, aged 10-20, testing positive, according to the Uttar Pradesh health department. 
  • Hundreds of Rohingya refugees were stranded in the sea as Malaysia turned them away due to COVID-19 fears, the BBC reported.
  • Italy has readied plans to ease lockdown. It has suffered the second-worst death 
  • India’s total number of positive cases was at 27,892.

  • Already, 872 people have died due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • The number of active cases were 20,835.
  • Until now, 6,184 cases have been cured or discharged.
  • Maharashtra continued to lead the table with 8,068 cases and 342 deaths.
  • Gujarat had the second-highest death toll at 151 on a case count of 3,301.
  • Madhya Pradesh was next with 103 deaths and 2,096 cases. 
  • In Kolkata, a senior government doctor at the frontline against the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) as well as a 34-year-old man, died on April 27. Both were diagnosed with the diease, the Press Trust of India reported, quoting sources at a hospital.

  • The United States remained at the top of the global COVID-19 count, with 987,322 cases positive to the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Its death toll was at 55,415.
  • Italy, Spain, France and the United Kingdom have recorded the most number of deaths — more than 20,000 each — after the US.  
  • All the above countries as well as Germany and Turkey have a tally of more than 100,000 cases.
  • The global death toll was at 206,997.
  • The proportion of secrious / critical patients among the active cases remained unchanged at 3 per cent.

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