Tribune News Service
Ludhiana, May 22
A personnel of the Railway Protection Force tested positive for coronavirus in Ludhiana on Friday, taking Punjab's tally up by one to 2,029---the lowest rise in Punjab's COVID-19 cases this month.
This takes Ludhiana's cases to 173, Punjab's daily COVID bulletin showed.
Ludhiana reported six more cases---five of them RPF personnel and the sixth a woman who recently returned from Delhi. But these have yet to be added to the official state tally.
Bathinda alos reported a positive case later in the evening. The patient had recently returned from abroad, officials said.
This has also yet to be added to the official tally, but when done, will take Bathinda's case count to 42.
So far, 1,847 coronavirus patients have recovered.
Punjab to ramp up testing
Punjab government plans to ramp up its testing COVID-19 capacity to 9,000 per day by next month---a development that comes on a day when the state’s official tally showed only one new coronavirus case.
The state government has installed a new automatic RNA Extraction machine at a laboratory at Guru Gobind Singh Medical College (GGSMC), Faridkot---the first of three such additional machines the government has planned to install to ramp up testing.
Minister for Medical Education and Research OP Soni inaugurated the laboratory at Guru Gobind Singh Medical College (GGSMC), Faridkot.
“Since there are numerous asymptomatic patients and many are expected to come to Punjab from outside. So, these machines will help to deal with the situation and can confirm cases instantly,” said Dr Raj Bahadur, Vice Chancellor of Baba Farid University of Health Sciences, Faridkot, said.
The government has two more laboratories planned at government medical colleges in Amritsar and Patiala.
Punjab currently has three government labs in the state that can conduct up to 2000 tests per day.
Officials said the state government wanted to ramp the state’s testing capacity to 20,000 samples per day.
The state has so far tested over 60,000 samples.
Meanwhile, Gurdaspur administration sealed villages of the four pregnant women who tested positive at the Batala Civil Hospital.
District Epidemiologist Prabjhot Kaur Kalsi said that three villages came in Batala and in Gurdaspur.
District-wise breakup of cases in Punjab is as follows: Amritsar (312), Jalandhar (210), Ludhiana (172), Tarn Taran (155), Gurdaspur (129), SBS Nagar (105); Patiala (104); SAS Nagar (102); Hoshiarpur (102); Sangrur (88); Muktsar (65); Faridkot (61); Ropar (60); Moga (59); Fatehgarh Sahib (57); Ferozepur (44); Fazilka (44); Bathinda (41); Kapurthala (34); Mansa (32); Pathankot (31) and Barnala (22).
The state has reported 39 deaths so far.
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