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Assam Health Department to Conduct COVID-19 Rapid Tests in Schools

State Health department is planning to conduct random Rapid Antigen testing in schools to detect Covid-19 among students and parents.

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Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  7 April 2021 1:15 AM GMT

STAFF REPORTER GUWAHATI:

Random Rapid Covid-19 Testing in School: With starting of the new academic session (2021-22) — both in government and private schools — amidst the rising cases of COVID-19, the State Health department is planning to conduct random Rapid Antigen testing in educational institutions to detect the virus infections among students and parents.

"Even though the schools have been asked to conduct classes by adhering to COVID-19 safety protocols, the Health department does not want to take any risk. Random Rapid Antigen tests will be conducted in schools to detect positive cases. The situation might turn bad if COVID-positive cases among students and parents go undetected," said a source in the Health department.

All government and private schools were physically closed from March to November 1, 2020 due to outbreak of COVID-19 and consequent nationwide lockdown. Even though the government schools started online classes neither half-yearly nor annual examinations could be held in time. The schools were reopened from November 1, 2020 in a staggered manner and annual exams were held in between February and March, 2021. Under such circumstance the State Government had decided to start the academic session for the year 2021-22 from April 1.

A senior doctor at Gauhati Medical College & Hospital (GMCH) said that it has been found that many children even after getting infected with COVID—19 virus remain asymptomatic due to their strong immune system.

"But children could be potential carrier of the virus to other senior and elderly members of their families. The possibility of such infection is very high now since the schools have reopened. So the Health department must conduct COVID tests in schools," added the doctor.

Of the 17,605 COVID-19 tests conducted on Monday (April 5), 70 cases were tested positive. From March 31, 2020 to April 5, 2021 altogether 2, 18,740 have been tested COVID-19 positive. The total COVID casualty so far is 1,109. Altogether 1,347 COVID-positive patients have so far died due to other reasons.

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