No rule to test all dialysis, daycare patients: Health Minister Harsh Vardhan

There are no guidelines that say all patients, those even seeking daycare admissions for dialysis and chemotherapy, should undergo Covid-19 tests. If this is happening then it is absolutely wrong. I think hospitals are taking extreme precaution if they are asking everyone to undergo tests.

On confusion on guidelines

There is no confusion. Our guidelines are very well defined. They have been expanded time to time to accommodate our changing needs. But nothing in the guidelines says that you must test all patients even those seeking daycare admissions.

On hospitals using “others” field to order tests

Tests are meant to be prescribed by a physician after proper clinical diagnosis and other investigations. There are set criteria. BY this logic, hospitals should be testing everyone, even their employees. This is unscientific reasoning.

On demands to allow testing before medical procedures

We have been receiving demands to expand criteria. The surgeons had demanded that Covid-19 test be made mandatory before a surgery but then we have decided that for the time being there is no need to panic. In case of emergency procedures, surgeons can use PPEs.

On opening up of economy

Gradually the country would need to open up. The economy needs to be kickstarted… It is the livelihood of so many people. But the health ministry is very clear – we cannot open red zone districts. We are keenly looking at their numbers and are working towards converting red zone to orange zones.

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