‘COVIRAP’- A Low Cost test developed by IIT Kharagpur gets ICMR Nod.
The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) have approved a low cost covid-19 test called COVIRAP. This diagnostic machine has been developed by IIT Kharagpur. The kit provides close test results similar to RT-PCR. The test gives the results in less than an hour. It does not require air conditioned laboratory. So, the testing labs can be set up even in an open field.
This testing kit consists of three mixtures to confirm the presence of virus in the body. In the method, first the sample is inserted into the kit. Then it is mixed with master mixers and heated to a certain temperature. The sample can be heated for second time as well to get the results. This is the unique feature of this test. The heated samples are put on a strip that produces some lines. These strips are then inserted into a cartridge from where an application uses the camera revealing if the patient is covid-19 positive or negative. The test results are displayed on a screen.
This test is up to 93% sensitive and up to 98% specific. The kit costs around Rs. 5000. The cost per test using the kit is around 500 to 600 rupees. The test kit is entirely indigenous, none of its components were imported.