Amid the spurt in coronavirus cases in Delhi, the number of RT-PCR tests has exceeded rapid antigen tests in the national capital.
The RT-PCR test, also known as real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction, is one of the most widely used laboratory methods for detecting the COVID-19 virus. Many consider it the gold standard for COVID-19 testing, since RT-PCR has significantly higher sensitivity and a lower potential for contamination or errors.
Delhi's health bulletin, on Friday, informed that a total of 21,845 RT-PCR tests were conducted in the city. Over 3.7 lakh people have been surveyed in the national capital as part of the efforts to curb the spread of coronavirus in the national capital, the union home ministry informed on Sunday.
Last week, Union Home Minister Amit Shah took the lead in ramping up medical infrastructure in the national capital. Shah directed the Delhi state government and health authorities to increase number of COVID-19 tests to more than 100,000 a day from the current 60,000.
In a 12-point directive, Shah said the DRDO hospital in the national capital would be used for serious coronavirus patients. Consequently, a total of 250 ventilators have been delivered to the DRDO hospital. AIIMS has also started the process for the recruitment of additional 207 Junior Resident doctors.
Shah also directed the Delhi government authorities and the city police commissioner to strictly enforce necessary measures to prevent COVID-19, especially wearing of face masks, so that there is no laxity in compliance with proper COVID-19 behaviour.
The Home Minister had also assured that a 10,000-bed COVID facility run by ITBP at Chhattarpur will be further strengthened. Meanwhile, MCD hospitals will be dedicated to the treatment of COVID-19 patients with mild symptoms.
For the past few weeks, Delhi is reeling under the rapid transmission of coronavirus infection. The spurt in coronavirus cases in Delhi has been witnessed since October 28 when the daily rise breached the 5,000-mark and crossed the 8,000-mark on November 11. As many as 111 fatalities were recorded on Saturday, pushing the toll in the national capital to 8,270. This is the fourth time in the last 10 days that the daily number of deaths has crossed the 100-mark. At present, Delhi's total number of cases has climbed to 5,23,117 of which 4,75,103 have recovered.
The rising coronavirus cases in Delhi were attributed to the festive season, non-compliance of the COVID-19 safety behaviour, and rising pollution in the city.