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Karnataka to Give 10% Incentive to Private Labs to Upload RT-PCR Covid Test Results within 24 Hours

A healthcare worker wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) takes a swab from a migrant worker, who returned to Delhi from his native state, for a rapid antigen test at a bus terminal, amidst the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in New Delhi, India, August 17, 2020. (Reuters)

A healthcare worker wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) takes a swab from a migrant worker, who returned to Delhi from his native state, for a rapid antigen test at a bus terminal, amidst the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in New Delhi, India, August 17, 2020. (Reuters)

If the labs delay results for more than 48 hours, they will have to pay a 10% additional penalty fee. They will also have to simultaneously upload the results on the ICMR portal, a practice followed since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic.

In a bid to avoid delay in getting RT-PCR results in Karnataka, the Department of Health and Family Welfare has issued a circular to private labs giving them incentives to publish results within 24 hours. If private labs are able to give results within 24 hours, they will be given a 10% incentive per test on the price fixed by the government.

If the labs delay results for more than 48 hours, they will have to pay a 10% additional penalty fee. They will also have to simultaneously upload the results on the ICMR portal, a practice followed since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic.

The state so far has conducted 31,23,918 tests -- this includes both RT-PCR as well as Rapid Antigen Detection tests. It has also increased its testing capacity, from conducting 4,000 tests per day in Bengaluru in July to 25,000 tests per day at the start of September, said Medical Education Minister K Sudhakar.

A huge backlog in getting test results had caused a stir, with opposition leaders hitting out at the state government's unpreparedness.

first published:September 03, 2020, 21:44 IST