COVID-19: Kerala starts antibody tests at airports

South India

Kerala Health Minister KK Shailaja has said that the state has started antibody tests in airports for expats. 


The minister added that elaborate arrangements have been done to identify COVID-19 infected persons and to ensure treatment.

"The state has started antibody tests in airports for expats. Elaborate arrangements have been done to identify COVID-19 infected persons and to ensure treatment”, Shailaja said.

The antibody testing kiosks have been set up in Thiruvananthapuram, Ernakulam, Kozhikode and Kannur airports.

“Kiosks have been set up to conduct antibody tests in  Thiruvananthapuram, Ernakulam, Kozhikode and Kannur airports." She further said.

Depending on the number of people expected to arrive in each, the number of kiosks will vary between five and 10. The antibody tests are primarily meant for those passengers who could not take COVID-19 tests.

"The kiosks have been set up in association with HLL Lifecare Ltd and 14,800 test kits have been arranged through Kerala Medical Services Corporation Ltd (KMSCL). More numbers of kits will be arranged as the number of persons increasing," she added.

"Five to ten numbers of kiosks can be set up in each airports depending on the number of passengers. Antibody tests in airports are conducting mainly for passengers coming without conducting COVID-19 tests. Health workers are conducting tests keeping all security measures and wearing PPE kits," Kerala Health Minister said.

The Minister further said that preference will be given to pregnant women, newborn kids and mothers, children below ten years, differently-abled people, people with other serious health problems, aged people and accompanied family members. 

"IGM and IgG tests are conducting through antibody tests. Those who are tested positive will be sent to COVID first-line treatment centres and others to quarantine. If people in quarantine have symptoms they will also be sent to first-line treatment centres," she said.

"We can get the results of antibody tests in minutes. Antibody test is not same as RTPCR test. COVID-19 positive can be confirmed only with RTPCR tests so that antibody test positive people will be observed in COVID care centers and RTPCR tests will be taken to diagnose COVID-19 infection," the Minister added.

On Saturday, Kerala records 195 fresh cases. This is the highest single day spike of COVID-19 cases in the state. This week alone, the state confirmed 1,032 COVID cases.

The state has reported 4,071 COVID-19 cases so far, out of which 2,108 persons have recovered. The remaining 1,939 patients are being treated in various hospitals.

With inputs from Agency

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