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ICMR approves home-based RAT kit for Covid testing

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NEW DELHI: The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has approved a home-based rapid antigen testing (RAT) kit for Covid-19, which will be soon available in the market and can be used for detecting positive cases in home setting.

“Home testing by RAT is advised only in symptomatic individuals and immediate contacts of laboratory confirmed positive cases,” ICMR said in an advisory issued on Wednesday.

The move is expected to make testing widely available and accessible, particularly in rural areas. Besides, home-based RAT would also mean symptomatic people will not necessarily have to step out for testing, lowering the risk of transmission.

The Council also advised against indiscriminate testing. It also said that all test positive individuals are advised to follow home isolation and care as per the ICMR protocol.

Currently, the approved kit is manufactured by Mylab Discovery Solutions and home testing should be conducted as per the procedure described by the manufacturer in the user manual. The home testing mobile App is available in Google play store and Apple store and must be downloaded by all users.

All users are advised to click a picture of the test strip after completing the test procedure with the same mobile phone which has been used for downloading the mobile app and user registration.

Data in the App of mobile phone will be centrally captured in a secure server which is connected with the ICMR Covid-19 testing portal, where all data will be eventually stored.

Manufacturer’s instructions must be strictly followed for disposal of the test kit, swab and other materials.

All individuals who test positive may be considered as true positives and no repeat testing is required, ICMR said.


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