Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan on Thursday slammed the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) after the party accused the centre-run RML Hospital of inaccurate Covid-19 testing, and of not submitting test results within 48 hours of being conducted.
“It is not right to do politics over the Covid-19 situation in Delhi as it weakens the fight against the disease,” Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan said on Thursday.
Harsh Vardhan said instead of making “baseless” allegations on a distinguished institute like the RML Hospital and its testing lab for “cheap media publicity”, Delhi Health Minister Satyendra Jain should strengthen health services.
If Delhi government wants to open more labs for testing, the Centre is ready to support, Harsh Vardhan added.
@SatyendarJain #COVID19 tests @RMLDelhi Lab Professionals
@PMOIndia @MoHFW_INDIA pic.twitter.com/Fqb4xxRxr2
— Dr Harsh Vardhan (@drharshvardhan) June 4, 2020
The Union Health Minister took to Twitter to slam the AAP and the Delhi government after he chaired a meeting through video conference to review the preparedness for prevention and control of the novel coronavirus in Delhi. Satendra Jain had raised the issue of wrong test results and delayed test reports by the RML Hospital during the meeting.
During the meeting, Harsh Vardhan also expressed concern over rising Covid-19 cases and low testing levels in many districts of Delhi.
AAP’s allegations against RML
The AAP on Wednesday had claimed that the Centre-run RML Hospital was giving out “erroneous” Covid-19 test results and violating government norms of submitting the same within 48 hours.
AAP spokesperson Raghav Chadha said the Delhi government re-tested 30 samples from Ram Manohar Lohia (RML) Hospital which were declared Covid-19 positive. The AAP leader had claimed that 12 of these samples were found to be negative and the result of two samples was inconclusive.
RML rejects claims of AAP
The RML Hospital, in a statement, said the dates of sampling were different and there was a gap of 7-14 days when resampling was done. It said quality checks are being done with the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) and the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) and the results are concordant.
The hospital also maintained that there was no backlog anymore and regular quality checks were being done.
“We are doing quality checks with AIIMS and NCDC and the results are concordant. Our positivity is more as all hotspot cases, family clusters and high-risk contacts of lab confirmed cases are more in our screening centre. Also we do not have any backlog now. The problem existed earlier when adequate testing kits were not available,” it said in a statement.
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