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Maharashtra govt slashes by half Covid testing charges. Check new rates – Mint

The Maharashtra government has brought down the rates of Covid-19 RT-PCR tests to 500 from 1,000 amid a recent spurt in infections. The charges for rapid antigen tests were also brought down to 150.

Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh Tope made the announcement on Wednesday.

After the outbreak of the pandemic in 2020, the charges for a RT-PCR test in Maharashtra were 4,500, which were slashed from time-to-time by the state government to ease the burden on people.

The price of RT-PCR has been capped for the sixth time.

New rates for RT-PCR tests here:

“The new rates for RT-PCR test are fixed at 500, 600 and 800. For giving samples at the collection centre, 500 will be charged. For the same test at a Covid Care Centre or a quarantine centre, the charges will be 600 and to collect the swab from home, the labs can charge 800,” Dr Pradeep Vyas, principal secretary of the public health department, said.

The cost of the anti-bodies test will be 250, 300 and 400 for similar services respectively.

“No private lab can charge more than these prescribed rates,” he added.

For another test- CLIA- for SARS-CoV-2 antibodies, the charges will be 350, 450 and 550 respectively, while for rapid antigen test the amount will be 150, 200 and 300 respectively, Dr Vyas added.

The state health minister said, “There is ample availability of material required for these tests. Which is why, the state government has decided to bring down the prices of these tests.”

Meanwhile, Maharashtra reported 39,544 new Covid-19 cases, 23,600 discharges, and 227 deaths in the last 24 hours, according to the state’s health department on Wednesday.

The total cases reached 28,12,980 including 24,00,727 recoveries and the death toll reached 54,649.

At present, there are 3,56,243 active coronavirus cases in the state.

The case fatality rate (CFR) in Maharashtra is at 1.94% while the recovery rate is 85.34%.

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