NEW DELHI: Amid claims by some experts that India was “under-testing” for Covid-19, health minister Harsh Vardhan on Friday said infections had not reached “community level” and defended the testing criteria as being a well-defined protocol based on scientific advice on who needs to be screened for the disease.
Responding to concerns expressed by MPs in Lok Sabha, Vardhan said, “I can say with perfect and utmost confidence and authenticity that whatever tests we are doing — and on whom — are with perfect scientific advice. No one in this House should have any doubts about that.”
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Vardhan was responding to the issue that has been raised outside the House as well. The government has said that randomised testing of patients with severe respiratory problems was sufficient to check for community spread and arguments based on “tests per million” were misplaced. The protocol was also being revised to expand tests even as it was necessary to avoid wasteful testing that may take attention away from those who actually need it.
On a question raised by Congress member Manish Tewari about the origin of coronavirus in the backdrop of many contradictory reports, the minister said, “It is being investigated. Every time a new virus comes, it gets mutated and a new virus comes.” Tiwari asked whether Covid-19 was a naturally occurring virus or the “result of a certain scientific experiment or a series of scientific experiments which may have gone astray”.
Vardhan said, “As per our information, I do not think there is any need for any apprehension. A lot of things are making the rounds on Read More – Source