Tata Group's healthcare arm on Friday announced a tie-up with Centre for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) for Covid-19 testing in smaller cities and rural areas. Tata MD, the newly formed venture of Tata Group, and the apex scientific research organisation will ramp up the Covid-19 testing capacity across Tier II and III towns as well as rural areas across India, an official statement said.
The capacity is being developed to manage any future surge in the Covid-19 testing requirements, it added. It can be noted that in the last few weeks, there have been concerns regarding the reporting of cases during the pandemic.
"This will significantly enhance the ability of state and district administrations to ensure wider availability and easier access to testing on an ongoing basis, Girish Krishnamurthy, chief executive and managing director of Tata Medical and Diagnostics (MD) said. The initiative will help improve the testing capacity in smaller locations of the country and will see CSIR's labs across the country being utilised for the Covid testing. The mandatory 'RT-PCR CRISPR' tests will be done using the Tata MD 'CHECK SARS-CoV-2' test kits, the statement said.
"Apart from vaccination, rapid testing and isolation of SARS-CoV-2 positive persons has emerged as the best strategy in combating Covid-19," Centre for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) director general Shekhar Mande said. At present, 13 labs of CSIR are already engaged in Covid-19 testing and the same will be expanded to 37, including in locations like Jammu, Thiruvananthapuram, Bhavnagar and Jorhat, the statement noted.
The first CSIR lab to go live with Tata MD is located at CSIR-Indian Institute of Petroleum (IIP), Dehradun, Uttarakhand, it said.