Bhubaneswar, Jan 19 (IANS) The Odisha government has received 30,000 OmiSure testing kits, which will be used on trial run basis in four towns of the state to detect the Omicron variant of Covid-19, an official said on Wednesday.
Odisha is the first state in India to place an order for the OmiSure kits. It had placed orders to procure 5 lakh kits, of which 30,000 kits have arrived, the official said.
“The OmiSure kits have arrived. There are many variants of Covid-19. Omicron is one among them, which is highly transmissible. The OmiSure kits will be sent to places having a high caseload for an internal study,” said State director of health services, Bijay Mohapatra.
Preliminary, the kits will be sent to Bhubaneswar, Berhampur, Cuttack and Rourkela where a high number of Covid cases are being detected in comparison to other places of the State, he informed.
The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) had recently approved the OmiSure kit developed by the Tata Medical and Diagnostics Ltd. (Tata MD) for RT-PCR detection of the Omicron variant.
At present, the state government is sending samples to Institute of Life Sciences (ILS), Bhubaneswar for genome sequencing to detect the Omicron variant of the SARS-CoV2. So far, the state has reported 202 Omicron cases.
Meanwhile, the state has reported 11,607 new Covid-19 cases, including 991 cases from 0-18 age group, on Wednesday. With these new cases, the cumulative positive tally increased to 11,67,094, and active cases rose to 84,770.
The death toll mounted to 8,494 with six fresh Covid fatalities. Two deaths were reported from Khurda district and one each from Bhadrak, Cuttack, Jagatsinghpur and Jharsuguda.