Chief Justice Abhay Oka, Justice Alok Aradhe
Chief Justice Abhay Oka, Justice Alok Aradhe
Litigation News

Delay in getting test results has direct connection with spread of COVID-19: Karnataka HC directs State to promptly release test results

The Bench asked the State to consider issuing a direction to testing labs to inform persons who test positive for COVID-19 what action must be taken.

Rintu Mariam Biju

The Karnataka High Court this week directed the state government to ensure that the COVID-19 test results of patients are released as early as possible.

While passing this direction, the Court noted that though the state government had issued a circular dated May 2 listing guidelines for giving out COVID-19 test results in an expeditious manner, the same was not being strictly adhered to.

This apart, the Division Bench comprising Chief Justice Abhay Shreeniwas Oka and Justice Alok Aradhe passed the following directions to the state government and Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP):

  • State government to issue directions to COVID-19 testing centres and fever clinics to advise anyone who gives a test to undergo home quarantine.

  • State to clarify whether testing centres have been advised to ensure that serious patients are told to undergo hospitalization.

  • State to ensure that a person who goes to a testing centre is immediately advised home quarantine. As home isolation facilities will not be available to everyone, this grey area has to be addressed by the government. If his home does not qualify for home quarantine, the state government has to communicate that he must go to a Covid Care Centre (CCC).

  • State to consider whether a direction can be issued to private hospitals to refrain from denying admission to COVID-19 patients if beds are available and if patient is willing to pay the charges.

  • It should be clarified that private hospitals should not insist on reports of labs and they are under an obligation to admit persons who show SMS or Arogya Setu report.

  • State and BBMP to ensure that the time lag between person getting positive test report and the BBMP team arriving at the residence is curtailed to the minimum.

  • State to direct private hospitals not to refuse treatment to non-COVID until a COVID-19 test is conducted.

  • All details regarding CCCs in Bangalore to be placed on record which includes the number of beds available in each of the CCCs, facilities available, etc.

  • State to consider issuing a separate protocol for frontline workers, officers, etc., as mentioned in the Court's pervious order.

  • State to place on record the facilities (including all steps taken) available in 5 of the districts where maximum COVID cases have been recorded, apart from Bangalore.

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