IIT launches a Covid-19 Test Bus in Mumbai — capable of conducting 5 million tests per month
- As coronavirus cases surge in the city, Mumbai gets its first
Indian Institute of Technology(IIT) Alumni Council launched a test bus that can reduce the cost of testing by over 80% without compromising on the testing capacity.
- According to the alumni body, this will facilitate a “100x increase in testing capacity, hopefully within a hundred days.”
On Maharashtra Day on May 1, the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Alumni Council launched a test bus that can reduce the cost of testing by over 80% without compromising on the testing capacity.
India’s first COVID-19 Test Bus launched in Mumbai- An IIT Alumni Council initiative The Test Bus is based on the… https://t.co/8gpCFDbNSE— IIT Delhi (@iitdelhi) 1588597764000
According to the alumni body, this will facilitate a “100x increase in testing capacity, hopefully within a hundred days.”
The move is aimed at supporting the health department in tackling the pandemic that has caused 361 deaths and over 11,000 infections in Mumbai alone. India’s testing capacity stood at 177 tests per million, as on April 15.
Up to five million tests per month
The IIT C19 Test Bus is based on the Kodoy architecture model that can facilitate affordable and rapid testing. It involves e-vehicles for sample selection & telemedicine, algorithm based pooled genetic testing and megalabs that are capable of conducting up to five million tests per month per lab.
“The Covid-19 Test Bus is based on indigenous technology and to the best of our knowledge, is the first vehicle of its kind in the world with onboard genetic testing, AI-based teleradiology and contactless sample collection. We chose Mumbai as the launch location given the relatively high number of cases in the city,” Sharma said.
How does it work?
AdvertisementAt first, a digital chest x-ray would be carried out and sent to the doctors online. The healthcare staff will then use artificial intelligence to see the probability of a person having Coronavirus.
“Then we collect the swab from the mouth and throat which is done across a glass screen whilst fully protecting the technician from any kind of contact with the patient,” said Dr Muffazal Lakadawala, Chief Medical Officer at the NSCI hub.
These samples are then sent to the diagnostic centers. The test bus has a capacity to collect 10-15 test samples per hour.
To onboard the lab space on the test bus, the IIT Alumni Council has partnered with Krsnaa Diagnostics, a venture-capital funded laboratory in India.
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