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Hydroxychloroquine for health officials caring for Covid-19 patients: ICMR

On private laboratories being allowed to conduct testing for COVID-19, Bhargava said 12 private-lab chains have been registered and have started working after being allowed the testing

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

Medical personnel help each other suit up at a federal COVID-19 drive-thru testing site.
Medical personnel help each other suit up at a federal COVID-19 drive-thru testing site.

ICMR Director General Balrama Bhargava on Monday recommended the use of hydroxy-chloroquine for treating healthcare workers tackling the suspected or confirmed cases and also the asymptomatic household contacts of the lab-confirmed cases.

The treatment protocol recommended by the Task Force has been approved by the Drug Controller General of India (DGCI) for restricted use in emergency situations.

Commenting on the lockdown initiated by several states to contain the infection, a official said the states have been told to order superintendents of police and district magistrates to enforce the lockdown strictly.

"Partial lockdown defeats the purpose of breaking the chain of transmission of novel coronavirus," the official said.

On private laboratories being allowed to conduct testing for COVID-19, Bhargava said 12 private-lab chains have been registered and have started working after being allowed the testing.

These 12 labs have 15,000 collection centres, he said.

So far the country has reported 415 cases, the officials said, adding the death toll stands at seven.

First Published: Mon, March 23 2020. 17:24 IST
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