States Asked To Increase Testing To Track COVID Spread; Know Odisha’s Count In Last One Week
Bhubaneswar: The Centre has directed the states to enhance COVID testing in order to effectively track the spread of the pandemic.
“It is seen from the data available on the ICMR portal that testing has declined in many states and union territories,” Additional Secretary in the Union Health Ministry Arti Ahuja mentioned in the letter.
She advised the states and UTs to pay attention to this aspect immediately and increase the testing in a strategic manner keeping in view the trend of case positivity in specific areas.
Referring to all advisories on testing issued by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), including the latest on January 10, she stressed early detection of cases for quick isolation and care. “Testing remains a key strategy for pandemic management as it helps in the identification of new clusters and new hotspots of infection which can, in turn, facilitate immediate action for containment such as setting up containment zones, contact tracing, quarantining, isolation and follow-up,” she wrote.
This can enable the state and district administrations to curb the spread of infection, she said, adding that this will also ensure a reduction in mortality and morbidity.
Notably, Odisha had tested 81,065 samples when the daily caseload breached the 10000-mark for the first during the third wave of COVID on January 12. Since then there has been a fall in testing with 75,731 on January 13, 74,936 on January 14, 77,120 on January 15, 70,117 on January 16 and 70,990 on January 17.
The state had tested 74,611 samples on January 11 and 69,018 on January 10 when 8778 and 7071 people were found infected respectively. A total of 71,432 samples were tested on January 9 when 3,679 fresh cases were reported.
Odisha has been testing a little more than 70,000 samples and these has been no increase in the number despite a steep rise in cases.