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No funds? TB lab refusing to test samples

IRL not conducting crucial CBAT & LPA tests, treatment of TB patients badly hit in Assam

BY OUR STAFF REPORTER

GUWAHATI, Feb 11: Treatment of TB patients in Assam has been badly affected due to non-receipt of patients’ cough samples by the Intermediate Reference Laboratory (IRL) under the State Heath Services for testing. The IRL has stopped taking cough samples sent by TB Centers in different districts of the State for CBAT and LPA tests for the last two months under mysterious circumstances. These two tests are essential for finding out drug resistance in a TB patient and follow-up treatment.

Now, the question is: Why has the IRL stopped receiving cough samples sent by TB Centres across the State? Are the testing equipments in IRL not in working condition or are there other reasons behind it?

These two tests should be done periodically for TB patients to be given further treatment.  Reliable sources said the IRL has stopped conducting these two special tests due to mismagement in the disposal of biomedical wastes generated on daily basis by the IRL. Sources said the agencies, which have been allotted the work of disposing biomedical waste generated by the laboratory, have stopped collecting biomedical waste due to non-receipt of payment of dues.