11/24/2020 Covid-19 testing lab set up at Delhi airport
The facility is expected to be operational within a week. Officials said it will not be mandatory for passengers to undergo the test at the airport.HT had on August 18 reported about the proposed facility. Airport operator DIAL (Delhi International Airport Ltd) said it has collaborated with a Delhi-based laboratory — which is associated with the Delhi government — to test Covid-19 samples.
Constructed in a 3,500 square metre area at the multi-level car parking of Terminal 3, this is the first such arrangement among Indian airports. Results of samples collected at the laboratory will be declared within 4-6 hours for incoming passengers. Until the results are confirmed, passengers can wait in the lounge or may choose to stay in a hotel,” DIAL said.
The lab has been built and equipped to handle up to 2,500 samples per day.
In case of a positive result, the passenger will be either sent to a hospital, institutional quarantine or home quarantine, as applicable as per the ICMR (Indian Council of Medical Research) protocols. “This will help the authorities to keep the infected passengers away from others. Those testing negative can continue their onward journey,” the airport operator said.
At present, all international passengers arriving in Delhi need to undergo institutional quarantine in Delhi. Those with a connecting Vande Bharat flight are allowed to undergo quarantine at their destination. Those carrying a RT-PCR negative report are allowed onward air journey and can seek exemption from institutional quarantine. For this exemption, RT-PCR test has to be conducted at least 96 hours before the journey.
An airport official, who wished not to be named, said the charge for the test at airport will be Rs 5,000, which will expense for a passenger’s stay along with food and beverages at the lounge till the time the results are out.