COVID-19 tests nearing one crore mark in State

68% of the tests done so far are RT-PCR, which has negligible chances of false negativity

Karnataka is all set to create another milestone in its pandemic control measures with COVID-19 tests nearing the one crore mark. With 1,21,612 new samples tested in the last 24 hours, the total number of tests touched 99,81,137 on Friday.

This number includes 68,07,043 RT-PCR tests. With this, the cumulative test positivity rate (TPR) touched 8.71% on Friday. From an average 80 tests a day in March, the State is now testing an average of over one lakh samples a day.

The State ramped up its testing from May onwards. From a total of 2,310 tests in March, the State conducted nearly 16 lakh tests in August. This further went up to nearly 20 lakh tests in September. The tests per million went up from 44,099 on September 1 to 72,541 on September 30.

On October 2, the State’s tests had breached the 50 lakh mark touching 50,89,730. The total number of tests touched 79,05,868 till October end.

RT-PCR tests

The State’s dependence on rapid antigen tests (RAT) has reduced considerably with over 68% of the total 99,81,137 tests conducted till date being molecular (Reverse Transcription Polymerase Chain Reaction – RT-PCR). RT-PCR testing is the gold standard test that has negligible chances of false negativity. On Friday, a record 1,03,801 tests of the total 1,21,612 tests conducted were through RT-PCR method. This is the highest number of RT-PCR tests conducted so far on a single day.

C.N. Manjunath, nodal officer for labs and testing in the State COVID-19 task force, said there is need to further ramp up testing to not just prevent the spread of infection but ensure early intervention in sick patients. “We need to track patients at a moderately symptomatic stage for early admission and treatment. This is the key to reduce mortality, especially now that the second wave has begun in some States,” he said.

The State on Friday reported 1,781 new cases of COVID-19, taking the total number to 8,69,561. With 17 deaths, the toll rose to 11,621. This is apart from deaths of 19 patients due to non-COVID-19 reasons.

As many as 2,181 people were discharged on Friday, taking the total number of recoveries to 8,33,169. Of the remaining 24,752 active patients, 539 were being monitored in the ICU.

Bengaluru Urban reported 1,067 cases, taking its tally to 3,61,654.

With six deaths coming from Bengaluru, the toll in this district rose to 4,084. The active cases in Bengaluru touched 17,663.

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