We need better testing, genome sequencing and mortality data4 min read 04 May 2021, 09:23 PM IST
Our battle against the covid pandemic requires far clearer inputs of information for us to sharpen our strategic approach
The second wave of the covid pandemic has overburdened our health system. There have been reports of a decline in testing in several Indian states and cities. Some states have allegedly given thresholds for positivity rates to private laboratories, which they are not allowed to breach. It is extremely difficult to get home collection of samples. In Delhi, on 3 May, only 61,045 tests were administered. Of these, 16% were rapid antigen tests (RATs). At some of the free testing sites, both RAT and reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) tests are administered to each patient. Thus, there may be some double-counting too. On the other hand, Delhi conducted more than 100,000 tests in the middle of April. With the new wave, testing numbers declined, and positivity rates are a function of testing.