While Tamil Nadu has tested over 3.37 lakh samples, Maharashtra has tested 2.82 lakh samples so far.

A health staff takes the throat swab of an individual Representational image
Coronavirus COVID-19 Testing Tuesday, May 19, 2020 - 10:18

India has doubled down on its testing since the lockdown was announced on March 24, which has now been extended to May 31.

According to the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), a total of 24,04,267 samples had been tested as of 9 am on May 19. As per ICMR's bulletin, 1,01,475 samples were tested in 24 hours, from 9 am on May 18 to 9 am on May 19.

Here are the state-wise numbers as of 10 am on May 19:

Andhra Pradesh has tested 2,48,711 samples out of which 2,46,279 were negative. As on May 18, the state has a total of 2,432 cases, with 1,552 recoveries and 50 deaths.

Kerala has tested 45,905 samples so far and of these, 44,681 have returned negative. The state currently has 631 confirmed cases of COVID-19, with 497 recoveries and 4 deaths.

Tamil Nadu has tested 3,37,841 samples so far, with 11,760 people testing positive. 3,25,546 samples tested negative and results of 535 samples are awaited. 4,406 people have recovered and 81 people have died due to the disease.

Telangana had been providing sample numbers till April 30. However, the updated numbers since then are not known. A total of 1,592 people have tested positive so far, with 1,002 recoveries. The state has recorded 34 deaths so far.

Karnataka has tested 1,51,663 samples, with 1,246 people testing positive and 1,49,566 samples returning negative. The state has recorded 37 COVID-19 deaths, while 530  persons have recovered.

Maharashtra has tested 2,82,194 samples, out of which 2,47,103 were negative and 35,058 have tested positive. 1,249 people have died from the disease in the state, while 8,437 have recovered. 

On May 18, the ICMR revised its strategy for COVID-19 testing. As per the new guideline, those with a history of international travel in the past 14 days, who show Influenza-like Illness (ILI) symptoms — acute respiratory infection with fever more than 38ºC coupled with cough — will be tested. 

Considering that migrant workers and expatriates are returning to their native states, all returnees and migrants, who exhibit symptoms, will be tested within seven days of developing an illness.

Additionally, all asymptomatic direct and high-risk contacts of a confirmed case will be tested once between day 5 and 10 of coming into contact with a COVID-19 patient, unlike previously between day 5 and 14.

The other patients that will be tested include:

  • Symptomatic contacts of laboratory-confirmed cases
  • Symptomatic health care workers or frontline workers involved in containment and mitigation of the disease
  • Severe Acute Respiratory Infection (SARI) patients
  • Symptomatic individuals within hotspots and containment zones
  • Hospitalised patients who develop symptoms

The ICMR has recommended that all testing be done only with real-time RT-PCR or the reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction test. This test can detect the presence of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. 

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