Covid testing in Kasaragod could run into problems as government shuts down Spice health unit and firefighters trained – The New Indian Express

Through Express news service

KASARAGOD: Covid RT-PCR testing in the district is likely to have a rough ride, with the government deciding to end Spice Health’s mobile testing unit. On average, Spice Health tested 700 samples each day.

From now on, all district covid testing will be performed at the Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Laboratory at the Central University of Kerala (CUK). But officials said the CUK lab is now only testing 250 samples per day – up from a maximum of 2,500 samples per day – after the government fired the 12 ad hoc technicians and data entry staff hired under the framework. of the national health mission.

CUK lab now has three new untrained lab technicians, an official said. “An RT-PCR laboratory needs special skills. The technicians who were made redundant were trained and efficient. We are going to waste precious time training the recruits who have joined now, ”said an official. The least the government could have done was to absorb the technicians trained under the new hiring program, he said.

According to the manager, the laboratory would need at least 15 technicians to perform 2,000 tests per day.

The other problem is that the covid test lab is now run by the university department. “With the resumption of regular classes, students will need access to the lab,” said the official.

A new NHM-funded laboratory building is ready but lacks a generator and inverter to ensure uninterrupted power. “These things were brought to the attention of the district administration months ago. But officials don’t realize this until after the government decides to end the service of Spice Health,” said the manager cited above.

At the crown central committee meeting held on Wednesday, collector Bhandari Swagat Ranveerchand asked the district industrial center manager to check with the Ministry of Industries whether CSR funds are available to purchase the generator and l ‘UPS.

CUK’s covid lab also faces the problem of waste disposal. IMAGE of the Indian Medical Association has been hired to collect biological waste from the laboratory. “According to the waste generated at the lab, they came at least four days a week. But now they only come once. The waste piles up in a faculty room,” the official said.

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