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India allows two companies to supply Covid-19 testing kits; no DCGI approval needed

Joe C Mathew     March 23, 2020

India has waived off the need for Drug Controller General of India's approval for COVID-19 testing kits that are developed locally. Two companies whose diagnostic test kits had been validated by Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR)'s National Institute of Virology have begun supplies today, government officials informed at a press conference today.

These include Altona Diagnostics and MY LAB. The names of kits are 'RealStar SARS-CoV-2 RT-PCR kit 1.0' and 'Patho Detect', respectively.

Along with the new approval for low cost diagnostic kits, the government has also allowed 12 laboratory chains with 15,000 collection centres all over the country to carry out COVID-19 tests.

"The number of lab chains that are participating in the registration process is increasing every minute," Balram Bhargava, director general ICMR and secretary Department of Health Research said.

The officials also informed that the companies manufacturing sanitisers have ramped up their capacity and distilleries have been instructed to supply sufficient raw material.

India has 415 confirmed COVID-19 cases now, and all seven deaths that happened had co-morbid conditions, the officials said.

The government also asked the states to ready dedicated hospital facilities to treat COVID-19 patients in case of a larger outbreak in the coming days.

Also read: Coronavirus: How UP, Rajasthan, Gujarat are dealing with virus scare

Also read: Coronavirus in India Live updates: Country records 8th death; govt bans domestic flight ops from March 24

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