The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) on Saturday (5 August) revised its guidelines, allowing 'on-demand' COVID-19 tests, as a result of which people will no longer be required to get a doctor's prescription to get tested for COVID-19, reports Hindustan Times.
The latest advisory of the ICMR to the states also suggests that the state governments cannot put in any restrictive requirements on testing. This comes as several states mandate that people must get the chief medical officer or some other authority to certify that they needed the test. Such restrictions will now go away.
The revised guidelines also suggest testing those with atypical presentation for COVID-19 such as stroke, encephalitis, blood mixed sputum, pulmonary embolism, acute heart conditions, and Guillain-Barre syndrome in paediatric patients.
The ICMR's revised guidelines come after the Delhi High Court had asked why people who show no symptoms of COVID-19 cannot get a test, given the proportion of such people can be big.
It should also be noted that the revised guidelines to make testing freely available to the people comes at a time when India has ramped up its testing infrastructure and is conducting more than a million tests each day.
As you are no doubt aware, Swarajya is a media product that is directly dependent on support from its readers in the form of subscriptions. We do not have the muscle and backing of a large media conglomerate nor are we playing for the large advertisement sweep-stake.
Our business model is you and your subscription. And in challenging times like these, we need your support now more than ever.
We deliver over 10 - 15 high quality articles with expert insights and views. From 7AM in the morning to 10PM late night we operate to ensure you, the reader, get to see what is just right.
Becoming a Patron or a subscriber for as little as Rs 1200/year is the best way you can support our efforts.