NEW DELHI: With an increase in a load of screening samples from suspected coronavirus (COVID-19) cases with symptoms and travel history to affected countries, as many as 52 testing labs have been commissioned across India, including two in Delhi. The Indian Council of Medical Research — the apex body in India for the formulation, coordination and promotion of biomedical research — along with the Department of Health Research has commissioned these 52 laboratories.
Two of the labs in Delhi are at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences and the National Centre for Disease Control. Also, 57 other laboratories are helping in sample collection for the nCoV. “A total of 56 DHR/ICMR Virus Research and Diagnostic Laboratories (VRDLs) and one facility at Leh have been designated to facilitate sample collection through government health authorities. Their role is to provide collection material (swabs and viral transport media) and facilitate the transport of samples to the nearest testing laboratory,” the ICMR said. There is only one sample collection laboratory in Delhi — Lady Hardinge Medical College. As of March 6, a total of 4,058 samples from 3,404 individuals have been tested by the network. (IANS)