Andhra launches mobile Covid-19 sample collection centres, Aadhaar must


People will receive test results on their mobile phones in the shortest possible time, an official said.

Days after crossing the one million mark in the number of samples tested for COVID-19, Andhra Pradesh government has launched 20 new mobile collection vans, where medical staff would collect swab samples from people having symptoms of the disease and then send them to laboratories for testing.

State nodal officer for Covid-19 Dr Arja Sreekanth  said each mobile centre would have 10 counters, so that samples of 10 persons could be collected at a time. Those undergoing tests would have to furnish all their particulars, including mobile numbers, Aadhar numbers, addresses and their present health conditions. The health department of Andhra Pradesh has set up the mobile collection vans and has planned to increase the number of vans by 50 as there exists a demand for testing in the state,  added Arja Sreekanth

 “This will also help the authorities do contact tracing and prevent community spread of the virus,” the nodal officer said. What is more, these mobile vans would be sent to all the containment zones to collect samples from people in the area. “They don’t have to go to the laboratories for testing, since the sample collection is done within their colony,” he said.

After collecting swab samples from people, medical staff at the vans will send them to the laboratories for testing. Sreekanth said people would receive the test results on their mobiles in the shortest possible time. An auxiliary nurse midwife will be notified about the people giving their samples so that the staff can keep track of their movement. In order to help authorities in doing contact-tracing and prevent community spread, the department has decided to send the sample collection vans to bus stands, railway stations and airports. They will also be sent to inter-state borders to collect samples from people arriving in the state, said Sreekanth.

The initiative has been launched after TDP chief N Chandrababu Naidu alleged that the state government’s claim of conducting one million COVID-19 tests was a “sham” as test reports were generated without taking samples. Andhra Pradesh is the third state to cross the one-lakh mark in number of tests after Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra.

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