AIIMS Current Affairs - 2020

5 Day Institutional Quarantine now Mandatory for COVID-19 Positive Patients in New Delhi

Until yesterday, COVID-19 patients who were pre-symptomatic or had mild symptoms were advised to self-quarantine themselves at their homes by staying in a separate room and using a separate toilet. This was as per a notice issued last month.

Over the last couple of weeks, the COVID-19 cases are notable on the rise in the National Capital, following this development the Lieutenant Governor of New Delhi, Anil Baijal on 19th June 2020 had made 5 days institutional quarantine mandatory for all positive patients of Covid-19.

Earlier on 19th June, in a high committee meeting comprising of officials from the Delhi Government along with Dr. V.K Paul (NITI Aayog member) and the Director of AIIMS, the charges were fixed for ICU facilities and isolation beds in the National Capital.

Steps taken by the Government to Restrict the Outbreak of the Pandemic in New Delhi

Citing a spike in Covid-19 cases, the government has made an estimate earlier during the first week of June 2020 that by the end of July 2020, there might be 5.5 lakh positive cases in New Delhi.

The Union Home Ministry along with the Delhi Government decided to scale up the testing during the second week of June 2020. From 5,947 samples being tested on 12th June, on 19th June a total of 13,047 samples were tested.

On 18th June it was also informed that 169 facilities are being set up at the National Capital to conduct 6 lakh rapid antigen Covid-19 tests. The Central Government has also ensured that 500 plus ventilators and 650 Ambulances will be provided to the hospitals and quarantine centers across the New Delhi.

Rapid Antigen Test Kits recommended

On June 15, 2020, the Indian Council of Medical Research recommended the use of Rapid Antigen test kits along with RT-PCR in containment zones.


The Antigen test kits will allow faster diagnosis. They will reduce laboratory examination. The maximum time taken by the Rapid antigen test to interpret positive or negative is 30 minutes.

Recommendations of ICMR

According to ICMR, individuals that test negative to COVID-19 in rapid antigen test should be tested with RT-PCR. On the other hand, individuals testing positive under the rapid antigen test are considered to be positive.

Antigen Test Kits

The Antigen Test kits were developed by a South Korea based company SD Biosensor.

Why SD Biosensor kit was chosen?

The USFDA had earlier authorized US based antigen kit called sofia 2 SARS Antigen kit. Also, Japan had authorized the Fujirebio’s Antigen test kit. However, with tests and analysis conducted by AIIMS and ICMR, India was satisfied with the performance of SD Biosensor antigen kit. The selection was done based on the specificity and sensitivity of the kits.

The specificity of the test is 99.3% to 100%. The sensitivity of the test ranged between 50.6% and 84%.

What is Antigen test?

Just like the RT-PCR test of COVID-19, the antigen testing also looks for virus rather than the antibodies. Antigens are foreign substances that induce immune system in the body.

What is the plan?

The Antigen Test is to be used in three categories as follows

  • Persons showing influenza like symptoms
  • Asymptomatic patients hospitalized for the treatment of malignant disease, immunosuppressed patients, transplant patients, etc.
  • Asymptomatic patients undergoing aerosol and surgical interventions such as surgical procedures, dialysis and bronchoscopy.

Limitations of Antigen test

According USFDA, the antigen testing is not as sensitive as that of RT-PCR testing. The sample collected for COVID-19 testing stays stable only for an hour. Therefore, its is essential to conduct the antigen testing at the  site of sample collection.