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Set Up More Testing Centres, Don't Insist on Covid Report for Admission: Delhi HC to AAP Govt, Hospitals

Representative photo.

Representative photo.

The bench also asked the Delhi government to put in place necessary infrastructure to streamline the sample collection process.

Taking note of steep rise in Covid-19 cases mounting pressure on existing testing facilities, the Delhi High Court on Monday asked the AAP government to set up more testing centres across the national capital. Delhi has been recording over 24,000 fresh cases daily over the past week now. The testing labs in Delhi are facing shortage of manpower amid huge rush of samples for testing.

A bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice Jasmeet Singh also asked the Delhi government to put in place necessary infrastructure to streamline the sample collection process. The direction was issued by the court after several lawyers told the bench that they were facing difficulty in getting tested as labs were saying they will carry out sample collection after at least a couple of days.

The lawyers claimed that the number of daily tests have gone down to around 60,000 from the over one lakh tests that were being conducted earlier. Last week, testing in Delhi dipped y 23%, according to reports.

Delhi recorded 350 COVID-19 deaths on Sunday and 22,933 cases with a positivity rate of 30.21 per cent.

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The submissions were made during hearing of a PIL seeking directions to the Delhi government to order hospitals not to insist on COVID positive reports to hospitalise patients who show symptoms of coronavirus.

The Delhi government told the court that its Health department has issued a circular on April 23 directing hospitals in the city not to insist on COVID positive test reports to admit patients who are showing symptoms of coronavirus infection.

The Delhi government told the bench that such patients would be kept in a dedicated area, in the hospitals, meant for suspected cases.

The court also directed hospitals to “scrupulously follow" the AAP government’s circular on not to insist on COVID positive test reports before admitting patients showing symptoms of coronavirus. The order came while disposing of a PIL seeking directions to the Delhi government to order hospitals not to insist on COVID positive reports to hospitalise patients who show symptoms of coronavirus.

The petitioner, Jaideep Ahuja, told the bench that the Uttar Pradesh government has passed such a direction on not insisting on RTPCRpositive test reports for admitting patients.

The Delhi government told the court that its Health department has issued a circular on April 23 directing hospitalsin the city not to insist on COVID positive test reports to admit patients who are showing symptoms of coronavirus infection.

(with PTI inputs)

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first published:April 26, 2021, 14:00 IST