PM Modi calls for scaling up of Covid testing, sero surveys
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday called for scaling up of Covid-19 testing and sero surveys and said the facility to get tested regularly and speedily at a low cost must be available to all at the earliest.
The Prime Minister also reiterated the country’s resolve to provide cost-effective, easily available, scalable solutions for Covid-19 testing, vaccination and medication to all.
PM Modi chaired a review meeting of research and vaccine deployment ecosystem to fight Covid-19 and underscored the need for continuous and rigorous scientific testing and validation of traditional medicine treatments.
Since September, India has been regularly performing over a million tests per day. Till now over 62 million Covid-19 tests have been conducted since the outbreak of the virus. The tests have resulted in a positivity rate of 8.5 per cent.
He appreciated the efforts of ministry of AYUSH for conducting evidence-based research and providing reliable solutions in this difficult time, an official statement said.
With most of the coronavirus-induced restrictions lifted, the number of coronavirus cases has been steadily rising. The PM’s call came weeks ahead of the start of the festive season in the country, which could lead to a spur in the spread of infection.
At the meeting, also attended by Union health minister Harsh Vardhan, NITI Aayog member (Health), Principal Scientific Advisor, senior scientists and other officials, PM Modi called for continued vigilance and a high state of preparedness against the pandemic.
Modi also appreciated efforts made by Indian vaccine developers and manufacturers to rise to the Covid-19 challenge and committed to continue government facilitation and support for all such efforts.
India is expected to have a Covid-19 vaccine from more than one source by early next year and the government is formulating distribution strategies for the immunisation of people across the country, according to the ministry of health.
The Prime Minister said regulatory reform is a dynamic process and experts in every current and emerging domain should be used by the regulator proactively, as many new approaches have emerged.
He also took stock of the health ministry’s comprehensive distribution and delivery mechanism for vaccines, including mechanisms for adequate procurement, and technologies for bulk-stockpiling, filling vials for distribution and ensuring effective delivery.
Though the number of new cases have come down significantly in the last couple of weeks, the country, with over 7.3 million cases, is on track to overtake the United States to become the worst-affected country in the world.
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