The number of coronavirus cases in the country is constantly on the rise. To avoid overcrowding of patients in the test centres, the ICMR-approved private laboratory, SRL Diagnostics has launched a drive-through COVID-19 testing facility in Chandigarh. The laboratory had already set up two centres for such facilities in Gurugram and Mumbai. However, in Chandigarh, this is a first-of-its-kind service.
What Is It?
In the drive-through process, the patient who needs to be tested remains seated inside a car, either next to the driver or in the left rear seat. A health employee then collects the specimen of the nasal or throat swab through the car window. The patient will need to have proper identification documents and a doctor’s prescription advising a COVID-19 test. As per reports, this procedure helps to fast-track collection of COVID-19 samples and it is safer for both the patients and the healthcare personnel.
The laboratory has set up a new drive-through sampling booth at Sector 11, Chandigarh. The samples collected here will be sent to Gurgaon for RT PCR tests. SRL Diagnostics is also collecting samples from private hospitals and homes in Chandigarh, Panchkula and Mohali. The charge for conducting each test is ₹4,500. To make the collection process faster and mitigate the risk of virus spread, it has started the drive-through sampling facility. Only one person will be operating at the booth. The car having the patient has to be taken next to the testing booth. The sample collector will then lean out through the booth panel to collect the sample. The patient will simply need to keep the car window open. Also, there must be someone else driving the car, other than the patient.
This is a great way to test patients for coronavirus and at the same time, maintain social distancing. We hope that similar procedures will soon come up in the other states as well.