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March 29, 2020

KP can conduct 200 coronavirus tests a day

Top Story

March 29, 2020

PESHAWAR: Khyber Pakhtunkhwa does not have the coronavirus test large-scale capacity.

The province has the capacity to test only 200 suspected patients daily while a private hospital in Peshawar has been authorised to conduct coronavirus tests with Rs 5,000 charges per test.

However, health authorities have not yet fixed any test charges for private hospitals. The healthcare commission has completed the assessment of private hospitals for allowing them to start the tests. On the other hand, Peshawar-based national laboratories are charging Rs8,000 per test. Test samples from all over the province are sent to the laboratory at Khyber Medical University.

Official sources confirmed that around 50,000 people had entered the province from abroad through air or land routes after the pandemic outbreak. These passengers were not screened at airports or other entry points. Now the search and screening process under way with the help of the Pakistan Army. “Pak Army has also allocated beds for the coronavirus patients across the province. In case of emergency, patients would be shifted to army hospitals. Army has already been deployed in all districts of KP,” an official said.

KP hospitals' present capacity of 1,500 beds will be increased accordingly while 321 schools have been declared quarantine centers throughout the province. Quarantine centers at Peshawar and DIK had already been functional after the outbreak of coronavirus in the province to deal with the passengers coming from Iran and other countries.

KP Health Department Director General Tahir Nadeem told Jang the virus testing laboratory has been established at Khyber Medical University with capacity of 200 tests per day which will be increased to 700 per day very soon. Test is free of cost at Khyber medical university because provincial government is providing kits and fund for tests “High density units and staff have been arranged in all districts throughout the province to cater the 1500 corona patients in government hospitals. Training of 2600 staff has already been completed”, he added.