Hyderabad: GMR Hyderabad International Airport on Monday started on-site coronavirus testing laboratory for passengers on international flights.
“GMR Hyderabad International Airport Ltd. (GHIAL), a GMR Group led consortium, today started an on-site coronavirus testing laboratory at Rajiv Gandhi International Airport (RGIA), giving travellers the added facility for a safe journey. The facility ensures a safe journey of all passengers entering the city, scheduled for domestic connecting flights or international departing passengers,” read a press statement from GMR.
As per the government mandate, international passengers on arrival have to carry their RT-PCR negative report, conducted within 96 hours before departures from the origin country.
This report has to be furnished to the state govt. officials deputed at the airport to avoid institutional quarantine. However, with the RT-PCR testing facility available at Hyderabad Airport, now passengers can also get themselves tested once they land in Hyderabad.
As per Telangana State health regulations, all arriving International passengers having onward connections need to have a negative RT-PCR test certificate (done within 96 hours prior to the departure time) either from port of origin or test done on arrival at Hyderabad International Airport to avoid institutional quarantine.
GHIAL has collaborated with Mapmygenome, a Hyderabad based NABL (National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories) and ICMR (Indian Council of Medical Research) certified agency to provide the services for testing COVID-19 samples
The Mapmygenome Covid-19 Test Lab has been set up at Hyderabad International Airport, and is operational round the clock. Apart from the on-site testing facility for passengers, the lab also offers walk-in options for airport personnel or anyone interested in getting a test done.
The Mapmygenome Sample Collection Counters for passengers are available at two locations at the airport: For arriving international passengers having an onward journey the sample collection counter is available at the immigration level at the airport.
To help departing international passengers, another sample collection counter is made available at the forecourt of Interim International Departures Terminal (IIDT). This may be used by those departing passengers who may be required by the destination country to carry negative RT-PCR Test report.
Such passengers going to get themselves tested at the airport should factor in additional time for the test report while traveling.
Passengers will have to provide their details such as, name, contact details and valid ID proof while registering for this facility at the airport. Results of samples will be declared within 3-4 hours. Passengers are advised to factor this time span when booking their connecting flights.
With a negative RT-PCR test report, the arrival international passengers can continue their onward journey or get an exemption from Institutional Quarantine. However, they will have to undergo home quarantine as per the govt norms, unless they qualify for special exemptions as per applicable government rules.
In case of a positive result, the passenger will be processed in line with applicable ICMR (Indian Council of Medical Research) protocols by the State authorities.
As the Government of India is preparing to open the sky with the rising air bubbles, the laboratory will be a key element in facilitating a safe journey for all the passengers.
Commenting on the development, Pradeep Panicker, CEO, GMR Hyderabad International Airport, said: “In line with MoCA and state government guidelines, we have come up with a COVID-19 testing facility at the airport itself to ensure easier availability of testing for all arriving international passengers and others who require access to such a facility.
The COVID-19 testing laboratory is equipped with all necessary testing and sample collection facilities, in compliance with the protocols established by ICMR and NABL.”
“We are confident that this step will further boost passenger convenience and instill more confidence in air travel as the safest mode of transportation in the post pandemic world,” Pradeep Panicker said.