Bengaluru: Keen to scale up testing infrastructure for COVID-19, the Karnataka government has decided to establish RT-PCR labs in Public-Private Partnership (PPP) model and the tender process for it would be taken up soon, Medical Education Minister K Sudhakar said on Friday.
Following the directions of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, measures were being taken to increase the testing by three times, he said.
To support this further, tender will be floated soon by the Health and Medical Education departments to set up labs for carrying out RT-PCR tests, Sudhakar was quoted as saying by his office in a release.
The state has achieved a new milestone by conducting 50 lakhs COVID-19 tests so far and the government was aiming to increase the number of daily tests from the present around one lakh to to 1.5 lakhs, he added.
The Minister on Thursday inaugurated the new Covid testing lab by Eurofins Clinical Genetics India (ECGI) in Whitefield, and it was expected to conduct up to 5,000 tests per day.
He said 144 labs have been inaugurated in the state in the last six months.
Despite creating awareness about the spread of coronavirus, the positive cases were increasing in the state, and hence, the government has taken strict action by hiking the penalty to Rs 1,000 for not wearing masks at public places, he said.
Though positive cases were high in the state, the death rate is under control, at 1.52 per cent, he said.
The tally of COVID-19 cases in the state stood at 6.11 lakh while the toll was 8,994 as of Thursday.