Lesser number of coronavirus tests are being conducted on Sundays in the national capital as compared to the rest of the days, data available from the Delhi government’s health bulletin shows.
The lesser number of tests coincide with fewer fresh cases on Sundays. Officials said one of the major reasons behind the low numbers (of COVID-19 tests) on Sundays is that many people do not know that the testing centres are open on that day.
The health bulletins, issued on Mondays, contain data of the last 24 hours. On July 4, a Saturday, authorities conducted 23,136 tests — 9,873 RT-PCR tests and 13,263 rapid antigen tests — and found 2,244 of them positive. The national capital reported 13,879 tests the next day (Sunday). The number of positive cases also fell sharply to 1,379. On July 6 (Monday), as many as 22,448 people underwent COVID-19 testing, of which 2,008 were diagnosed with the disease.
Similarly, 12,171 tests were conducted on July 12, the second Sunday this month, as compared to 21,236 tests a day before and 21,063 a day later. The number of positive cases on these days stood at 1,246, 1,573 and 1,606, respectively. On July 20, the third Sunday, Delhi reported only 11,470 tests as compared to 20,206 a day before and 20,852 a day later. As many as 954 cases were recorded on Sunday, 1,211 on Saturday and 1,349 on Monday.
According to health bulletins, on July 26, the fourth Sunday this month, the city reported 11,506 tests, whereas 17,533 tests were conducted a day earlier. Officials said one of the major reasons behind the low numbers on Sundays is that many people do not know that the testing centres are open on Sundays. “One reason is that people think it is a holiday. So, less people turn out on Sundays,” an official said. Also, a lesser number of testing centres remain open on Sundays in some districts, so the overall testing numbers are low, he said.
The ramp-up in testing happened June 18 onwards, when Delhi started conducting tests through the faster rapid-antigen methodology. Since then, tests have increased almost threefold — from an average of around 7,000 a day during June 12-18 to an average of around 20,000 per day at present. According to the health bulletin issued on Monday, tests per million people in the city have increased to 50,435.