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Stop using rapid test kits from China for two days says ICMR to States

The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) on Tuesday advised all the states to stop using the recently received Chinese Rapid Test Kits (RT PCR) for coming two days, after the huge discrepancy in the accuracy of the results. The RT PCR test kits were given to detect the coronavirus.

This order has been received after the Rajasthan Governments decision of stopping the use of the test kits from china due to the variation in the results earlier on Tuesday.
The Epidemiology and Communication Diseases head at ICMR Raman R Gangakhedkar addressed the media and said, “you might know we have distributed rapid testing kits. Today we got a complaint from one state that there is reduced deduction in the results. We asked other three states to check on the results and we got to know that there is a variation from 6% to 71% in the positive RT PCR samples.”

The State Health Minister of Rajasthan, Raghu Sharma, said, “the kits only detected 5.4 percent accurate results against the expectation of 90% accuracy.”
It is not good when there is variation in the tests even though its first-generation test, more investigation has to happen in the test result, added Gangakhedkar.
He further pointed out “it’s only 3 and half months since Covid19 started so whatever tests we invest and we have to refine, and we will not turn a blind eye to it. Therefore, all the states were asked not to use the test kits for next two days”.

He also added that, they will give a clear-cut signal because if there is a problem replacement is possible.
India received more than five lakhs test kits from China last week to test the pandemic and it was distributed across the country. The ICMR authorities already informed and explained that the test was for monitoring surveillance and not for diagnosis. The head of Epidemiology and Communication Disease Raman R Gangakhedkar said last week that, “there are no concern with respect to the testing kits being faulty, that concern was with respect to immune response alone.”

The tests are happening in around 86 private labs and 201 ICMR network labs and till today 4 lakh samples are tested said Gangakhedkar.

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