Kolkata: After drawing flak for its low rate of COVID-19 tests, the West Bengal government has now decided to take swab samples of all symptomatic as also asymptomatic direct and high risk contact of a confirmed case as part of its containment and treatment strategies in high-risk spots.
“Swab samples be taken for all symptomatic contacts, and all asymptomatic direct and high-risk contacts of a confirmed case as per Indian Council for Medical Research guidelines,” the state health department said in a memo.
The swab samples will also be taken “in clusters/quarantine centres, as deemed fit by the local administration,” the department said in the memo.
The central government has identified four districts — Kolkata, 24 Parganas (North), East Midnapore and Howrah — as hotspots, where higher number of Covid 19 infected cases have been recorded.
Central government functionaries, state opposition parties and doctors have in the past few days criticised the low number of COVID-19 tests in Bengal.
The criticism has got shriller after the National institute of Cholera and Enteric Diseases (NICED) chief Shanta Dutta on Monday said the number of tests are too low compared to the state’s population and density. (IANS)