THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The state’s plan to use rapid antibody test kits for surveillance and to check traces of community transmission took an unexpected turn as the Indian Council of Medical Research directed all states to return the kits provided by it, citing performance issues.
As per a letter issued by the ICMR to the chief secretary, some states have raised issues regarding the performance of the kits during the testing exercise that they have undertaken and upon evaluation, the anomalies remained. Thus the 12,500 kits manufactured by the companies Guangzhou Wondfo Biotech and Zhuhai Livzon Diagnostics should have to be returned so as to send them back to the suppliers. At the same time, it is learnt that the process is on to procure two lakh rapid antibody test kits through the Kerala Medical Services Corporation Ltd.
“Some states like Punjab and Rajasthan got the antibody kits and started testing. They found it faulty. Since these test kits are of the same batch, we have decided not to use them further. However no decision was taken not to use antibody kits any more. Since these are all from the same batch, a decision was taken not to use these kits,” said a top official who added that many countries like Italy, UK and Germany have returned the kits.