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Sole genome sequencing lab in Punjab short of kits

Amid concerns over the new variants of the Omicron virus, the state’s only genome sequencing lab at Government Medical College is running short of testing kits. As of now, the lab has not even a single test-kit of the whole genome sequencing.

As many districts have reported an upsurge in Covid cases over the past few days, the likelihood of mutations is seemingly very real.

The Health Department said many districts, which had reported a sudden rise in cases, had reported cases of BA.5 variant, which was said to be an offshoot of the Omicron family and could evade immunity created by vaccination and previous infection. Mohali, Patiala, Ludhiana, Amritsar and Bathinda were among the districts hit hardest by the new variant, said the department.

The lab had also faced a shortage of kits during the third wave of Covid.

Dr Rajesh Bhasker, State Nodal Officer, said, “The lab is without kits for only three days. We have already placed orders for new kits. We are expecting the lab will get kits by next week.”

46 more infected in district
The district today reported 46 infections. Of these, 28 cases were reported from Patiala city, while Dudhan Sadhan and Kauli blocks reported five cases each. Rajpura city reported four cases and Kallon Majra logged two cases. Shutrana and Bhadson blocks witnessed one case each. Tribune India

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