Screening for corona at just Rs 500, soon

A Chennai-based medical devices firm has indigenously developed a testing kit for testing Corona infections.

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Laboratory
Picture: Pixabay

Chennai: Pay Rs 500 and get tested for Corona virus. A Chennai-based medical devices firm Neuberg Diagnostics, part of the Trivitron group, has indigenously developed a testing kit for testing Corona infections.

The company has been working for a month to get the testing equipment ready. Even as the kit is available and the company is ready to offer tests for Rs 500 (as against $1,100 in the US) in a private lab, there are a couple of factors that are delaying the process.

To use the kit, Neuberg has to wait for clearances from the National Institute of Virology. “It has been mandated that one has to test 1,000 positive samples (while India has less than 200 positive cases). We have synthetic samples to test and get the clearances in the next two weeks,” said GSK Velu, CMD, Trivitron

Also read: Advisory by Pharmacy Council of India

Second, India doesn’t allow private labs to test for COVID infections. “The government is still in talks with the ICMR on this. We have written to the ICMR asking them to approve tests in private labs. With Neuberg Labs, we can test up to 3,000 – 4,000 per day in our National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories (NABL) – approved labs.

Velu further said their team developed the kit with the learnings from Shandong Yingsheng Biotechnology Co. Ltd, a Chinese company which developed a testing kit for testing COVID infections.

“We had signed a JV with the company in November 2019. Soon after, Wuhan got infected with the Coronavirus and Shandong Yingsheng developed a testing kit on an emergency basis. We began developing this for testing in India at Trivitron in partnership with Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology,” he added.