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Karnataka establishes more than 100 Covid-19 labs

The Karnataka government has set up more than 101 Covid-19 laboratories across the state. It also became the first southern state to conduct 100,000 tests in just two days.

"From February to May 2020, Karnataka took nearly 99 days to conduct first one lakh tests, however, at the turnaround time, to conduct one lakh test takes two days with the establishment of 101 labs across Karnataka," a health official told to IANS.

Karnataka has conducted 20 lakh coronavirus tests in less than five months to emerge as one of the highest coronavirus-testing states in India, the official added.

"Karnataka has conducted more than 20 lakh Covid tests from March 23 to August 16 (Sunday) and stands as one of the top states conducting a maximum number of tests," the health official added.

Starting with just 2,309 tests in March, the state incrementally raised its testing capability to 55,021 tests in April, followed by 2.4 lakh in May, 3.2 lakh in June, 7.6 lakh in July and 6.8 lakh in the first 16 days of August.

Kidwai Bangalore has emerged as the highest testing government laboratory with 1.05 lakh tests, followed by GIMS Gulbarga (88,323), NIMHANS Bengaluru (81,816), among others.

Among private labs, Neuberg Anand has conducted the maximum number of tests which is 69,897, followed by Syngene (42,769), Xcyton (39,989), KMC Manipal (26,626), among others.

"All private labs have conducted 4.5 lakh tests till August 16," added the official.

By Tuesday, Karnataka had tested 21.3 lakh, people, for Covid, comprising 5.5 lakh rapid-antigen detection tests and 15.8 lakh RT-PCR and other methods of testing.

Though the health official shared information from March 23 to August 16, the first Covid positive case in the state occurred on March 8, when an IT employee returning from overseas tested Covid positive.

Covid cases are spiking in Karnataka, rising by 7,000 infections on an average daily to reach 2.4 lakh, of which 79,782 are active.

(With agency inputs).