How Delhi collects samples for Covid testing on daily basis?

Sample collection starts at around 9 am every day.

New Delhi: Every evening, the Delhi government releases data on fresh Covid cases detected in the last 24 hours. What is the procedure that it follows?

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As per the health officials, the data is collected one day before from all the 11 districts in the city which are then compiled to present the fresh picture of the Covid situation in the national capital.

Sample collection starts at around 9 am every day.

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“Sample collection starts at various facilities and in the containment zones and Covid hotspots at around 9 am and goes on till 2-3 pm,” said the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS).

All the samples are preserved in the cold chain and are transported to the designated labs the same day. In the labs, the positive cases are calculated to find the exact Covid numbers for that particular day.

The sample collection is done by trained healthcare workers following standard safety measures. At the time of sample collection, the person undergoing the test needs to share complete details like name, age, sex, residential address and documentary proof for that address along with mobile numbers.

As per the DGHS, a person has to give throat and nasal swabs, which are technically called Oropharyngeal and Nasopharyngeal swabs, collected separately at the same time.

As per Delhi government’s prescribed norms, any suspect case can visit government healthcare facilities as well as private centres.

A private hospital approached by a person takes the sample and sends it to the empanelled /designated Covid lab or it may arrange sample collection and processing by the designated lab itself.

As per the government order, the national capital has three official labs — LNJP, ILBS and NCDC — for genome sequencing.

However, Delhi has seen an increase in the number of private labs since the second Covid wave last year.

Seeing the high transmissibility of new Covid variant Omicron, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had announced two weeks ago that Delhi is ready to conduct 3 lakh tests a day if needed.

Meanwhile, a total of 65,621 new tests — 54,141 RT-PCR and 11,480 Rapid Antigen — were conducted in the last 24 hours, as per Sunday’s health bulletin, which pushed the total number of tests conducted in the city to 3,40,60,063 so far.

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