'India Will Start Producing RT-PCR, Antibody Kits For COVID-19 By May End': Union Health Ministry

Addressing the conference Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan added that all processes are in an advanced stage and production will start after getting approval from ICMR.

India   |   29 April 2020 11:23 AM GMT / Updated : 2020-04-29T17:27:44+05:30
Writer : Aditi Chattopadhyay | Editor : Shubhendu Deshmukh | Creatives : Nandan M
India Will Start Producing RT-PCR, Antibody Kits For COVID-19 By May End: Union Health Ministry

Image credit: ANI/Twitter

The country will be self-reliant in producing indigenous coronavirus-testing kits by May announced the Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan on April 27.

"We will be able to produce RT-PCR and antibody test kits in India by May. All processes are in advanced stage and production will start after getting approval from ICMR. It will help us in meeting our target of one lakh tests per day by May 31," NDTV quoted the Union Health Minister as saying.

The announcement was made during a review meeting via video conference with the Delhi LG, Delhi Health Minister, MCD Commissioners, DMs and DCPs of all districts of Delhi and Central/State and District surveillance officers and heads of government hospitals, held by Dr Harsh Vardhan.

"We have issued directions to expedite the development of anti-body detection kits, real-time PCR-based detection kits and vaccines for COVID-19 under 'Make in India'," Dr Vardhan said.

Officials also informed Dr Harsh Vardhan about various computational methods being developed by DBT labs to predict the potential antiviral drug molecules. Other strategies involve surrogates of the virus that are being developed representing one or more critical steps in the virus lifecycle and inhibitors are being tested.

The added that work is in progress to isolate neutralizing antibodies either from the patients recovered from COVID-19 or from human antibody libraries. Work is also underway on the development of candidate vaccines.

Ministry of Health and Family Welfare reported on April 27 that a total of 29,435 confirmed cases of COVID-19 has been reported in India, out of which 6,869 persons have recovered or migrated.

There are 21,632 active cases of COVID-19 in the country. 934 people have lost their lives due to the coronavirus in the country to date.

The ministry further informed that the country currently is registering a recovery rate of 23.3 per cent.

"For the last 14 days, our doubling rate is 8.7, while for the last seven days, it is 10.2 days. In the last three days, it is 10.9 days roughly," Dr Harsh Vardhan. He added that no fresh case had been reported in 80 districts in the last seven days and 17 districts had no case in 28 days.

"In 47 districts, no case has been reported in the last 14 days, while 39 districts have not reported a case since the last 21 days," he said.

Also Read: Punjab: 12 Returnees From Sri Hazur Sahib In Maharashtra Test Positive For COVID-19

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