Odisha issues notice to vendor on faulty rapid antigen test kits

25 engineering students who were found positive were declared negative when tested with RT-PCR kits

The Odisha government on Tuesday said the report of 25 engineering students testing positive for coronavirus in State-run Veer Surendra Sai University of Technology in Burla was found incorrect as students were tested by ‘faulty’ antigen testing kits.

The State government also issued a show case notice to New Delhi-based Oscar Medicare Private Limited which supplied testing kits.

According to Pradipta Kumar Mohapatra, Additional Chief Secretary (Health and Family Welfare), the 25 students — who had tested positive for COVID-19 — were absolutely fine and they had not tested positive for the virus.

Since, almost all students were asymptotic, they had to undergo RT-PCR tests again and their test results came negative.

The rapid antigen testing kits were checked and those were found to be faulty, said Mr. Mohapatra. The Odisha State Medical Corporation Limited directed the vendor to respond within three days.

Tests conducted till February 9 this year by rapid antigen kits constituted 75.79% testing in Odisha.

After reports of students testing positive surfaced, they were placed in isolation. Subsequently, the local administration had declared a shutdown on the university campus and its adjacent areas. Examinations which were to begin from March were postponed. Students returned to the online mode for classes.

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