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Kerala slashes RT-PCR test rate to Rs 500

The Kerala government on Friday slashed the price of RT-PCR tests to Rs 500 from Rs 1,700 at all private laboratories in the state, according to a government notification.

It was in January that the Kerala government came out with an order that the rate of an RT-PCR test should be Rs 1,500 and following the private laboratories approaching the Kerala High Court the rate was fixed at Rs 1,700.

As many as 38,607 people tested positive for Covid on Thursday while the number of active cases touched 2,84,086.

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The RT-PCR test is considered the gold standard for the diagnosis of Covid as directed by the ICMR. In Kerala with the price of testing very high when compared to states like Odisha charging just Rs 400 and Haryana, Telangana, and Uttarakhand charging Rs 500, on Friday Kerala Health Secretary Rajan Khobaragade came out with an order fixing the rate at Rs 500.

Presently private laboratories whose personnel collect samples from the residences for RT-PCR testing charge an additional Rs 1,000 as service charge over and above Rs 1,700.