Coronavirus: Kerala to conduct antibody tests from June 8
Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan said antibody tests would be conducted on a large scale to check if there was any community spread of COVID-19 in the state
Thiruvananthapuram: The Kerala government has decided to conduct antibody tests from Monday (June 8) to check if there was any community spread in the state as the coronavirus (COVID-19) cases are increasing in the state.
The state had reported 111 positive cases on Friday (June 5), the highest single-day spike, prompting chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan to declare the situation as "grim".
Vijayan also said the antibody tests would be conducted on a large scale to check if there was any community spread in the state.
Health secretary Dr Rajan Khobragade said the tests would begin from June 8.
"It is a surveillance done on a scientific basis. From the community various segments will be under the zone of consideration," he told PTI.
The state has received 14,000 kits through Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and 10,000 of these have been given to different districts.
Another 40,000 kits are expected in the next three days, the chief minister said.
The plan is to conduct up to 15,000 antibody tests per week to check for community spread.
If anyone's antibody test turns out positive, then a PCR test would be conducted to confirm the infection, he had said.
The government is also aware that with rising cases, the easing of lockdown restrictions would be a huge challenge.
More than one lakh people are expected to come to the state from abroad in June.
The chief minister had announced that places of worship, malls and restaurants would open from June 9, but social distancing and all other protocols should be strictly followed.
Those above 65 years and children below nine would have to stay away from places of worship.