The government labs are struggling to deliver test reports leading to delay in tracing and quarantining people who test positive.
Sources said that thousands of swab samples are lying at the labs due to mismatch in testing capacity of the labs and the samples collected. In many cases, the results are coming five to 10 days after the collection of sample, which according to senior medical professionals serve no purpose in treating the positive cases.
A few of the reports accessed by TOI revealed the facts behind the backlog of the samples. In one instance, swab samples of a 65-year old patient from Guntur district were collected on June 6. His result—positive–came on June 17, 11 days after the sample collection. This means that the person had nearly completed his quarantine/isolation period by the time the test report was delivered.
Experts worry that the delay would lead to some people becoming super spreaders. “The tests are to determine a person is infected or not. What purpose would it serve if the result comes after a week or 10 days?” asked a retired professor at a medical college.