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PM launches high-throughput Covid testing units in 3 states

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday launched "high throughput" testing facilities in Noida, Mumbai and Kolkata respectively that would provide the much-needed shot in the arm that India's battle against Coronavirus so badly requires.

He also said India was in a much better position than other countries in the fight against the pandemic as a result of "right decisions taken at the right time". Modi also added that the country has expanded its health infrastructure at a rapid pace.

Speaking after virtually launching the COVID-19 testing facilities, Modi added that in the fight against Coronavirus, India has come to a point where it does not lack awareness, its scientific data is expanding and resources are also increasing.

The virtual launch event was attended by Union Health minister Harsh Vardhan and the Chief Ministers of Maharashtra, West Bengal and Uttar Pradesh — Uddhav Thackeray, Mamata Banerjee and Yogi Adityanath respectively.

The deaths due to the Coronavirus in India are much lower than many big countries, the Prime Minister maintained.

Modi also pointed to the rapid pace of health infrastructure development, from testing labs, personal protection equipment to Covid facilities.

"In January, where we had only one centre for COVID-19 testing, now about 1,300 labs are operating in the country," he said.

The new testing facilities will give West Bengal, Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh more strength to fight COVID-19, he said.

The three high-tech testing facilities have been set up strategically at ICMR institutions — National Institute of Cancer Prevention and Research in Noida, National Institute for Research in Reproductive Health in Mumbai and National Institute of Cholera and Enteric Diseases in Kolkata.

These will be able to test over 10,000 samples in a day, a statement from the Prime Minister's Office had said.

These labs will also reduce turnaround time and exposure of lab personnel to infectious clinical materials.

The labs are enabled to test diseases other than COVID-19 as well and post the pandemic, will be able to test for Hepatitis B and C, HIV, Mycobacterium tuberculosis, cytomegalovirus, chlamydia, Neisseria and dengue.

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