Will increase rapid testing sites, AAP tells HC

The Aam Aadmi Party government on Thursday told the Delhi High Court that it is in the process of increasing the number of rapid antigen testing sites to ensure easy accessibility for the general public.

“It is stated that the number of rapid antigen testing sites are being further increased by the Delhi government to ensure easy accessibility for the general public to get themselves tested near to their residence,” the Delhi government said in its affidavit filed before a division bench of the high court presided over by Justice Hima Kohli and Justice S. Prasad.

The court was hearing an application filed by advocate Sanjeev Sharma, who highlighted several occasions where non-Covid patients needing immediate medical procedures and testing did not get the opportunity to do so.

The AAP government further submitted, “As far as camp approach in stadia etc. is concerned, it must be kept in mind that public health is about people and not essentially about the service provider. Ease of people accessing the services is crucial, and hence testing venues should preferably be in close proximity.”

Keeping in view the current spike in the number of cases, the bench directed the Arvind Kejriwal-led Delhi government to submit an action plan on ramping up Covid-19 testing.

“Give an action plan on ramping up testing in the national capital which is imperative since as of yesterday (June 24), Delhi topped the country with the highest single-day spike in the number of cases at 3,788,” the bench said.

Sharma’s application was filed in the main matter filed by advocate Rakesh Malhotra, who had sought rapid testing and declaration of results in 48 hours.

Malhotra, through his petition, had raised a grievance that the Delhi government is not taking expeditious steps to furnish reports after conducting tests on suspected people, within a reasonable time of 48 hours or even earlier, and as a result of the delay, contact tracing is also getting delayed and the infection is multiplying rapidly in Delhi.

The national capital on Thursday witnessed a spike of 3,390 Covid-19 cases and 64 deaths, taking the tally to 73,780.

On Wednesday, Delhi had surpassed Mumbai in the number of Covid-19 cases, thereby becoming India’s worst-hit city.

According to Delhi government data, as many as 3,328 people have recovered in the last 24 hours. Till now, 44,765 people have recovered, while 2,429 have succumbed to the deadly disease.

Over 17,305 Covid-19 tests were conducted on Thursday as against 19,059 conducted the previous day. In total, 4,380,12 tests have been conducted so far in the national capital.

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