"The Odisha government has received 30,000 'OmiSure' RT-PCR test kits for early detection of the Omicron variant of COVID-19," a senior health department official said. Odisha’s Director of Health Services Bijay Mohapatra said: "The trial run of the Omisure kits were in progress. It will be first used for internal study and the kits will then be dispatched to districts reporting a higher number of cases," he said.
Official sources said that the state had received 30,000 'OmiSure' kits in the first phase out of its order of 5 lakh such kits. He added, "The kits will first be used in four cities - Berhampur, Cuttack, Rourkela and Bhubaneswar."
Odisha was the first state in the country to place an order for 'Omisure' kits after Tata Medical and Diagnostics Ltd (TATA MD) in partnership with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) developed it, the official said. The 'OmiSure' kits can detect the Omicron variant of SARS-CoV2 in nasopharyngeal/oropharyngeal specimens during the RT-PCR tests.
Odisha has so far detected 202 Omicron cases after the detection of the first two cases on December 21. The kits will be used in districts recording high positivity rates in the state. According to January 18 data, Sundargarh had recorded the highest test positivity rate of 36.1 per cent, followed by Khurda at 31.1 per cent. Twenty-five districts are in the red zone with TPR above 7.5 per cent.
In terms of active cases, Khurda, Sundargarh, Cuttack, Sambalpur and Balasore were in the red zone with 29,745, 10,554, 5,934, 3,498, 3,227 cases respectively till January 19. The state on Wednesday reported 11,607 new COVID-19 cases, 521 more than the previous day, with the tally surging to 11,67,094.
With PTI Inputs