NEW DELHI: The Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur (IIT-Kh), has created an inexpensive, handy unit for quick diagnostics of COVID-19 which provides results in an hour. The IIT-Kh team of researchers have named the unit COVIRAP. Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR) has authorised COVIRAP and many commercial units have already contacted them for technology licencing.
According to the researchers, the COVIRAP can be accommodated anywhere without the availability of an air-conditioned laboratory. This method is not only cost-effective and portable but is also very reliable and accurate. It would only cost around Rs 500. Each test provides a kit of three master-mixes made by the team. After various steps of mixing and heating, a picture of the testing strips has to be captured by a smartphone of a custom-made mobile application which will the show the results of the test.
The IIT-Kh team said that the test has been intensely tested and approved by the ICMR. The methods and results of the test are of the same standard as of the high-end RT-PCR tests. They added that it can also be used to test other diseases such as influenza, malaria, tuberculosis and dengue.