Mizoram health minister Dr R Lalthangliana on Thursday inaugurated a makeshift RT-PCR laboratory at an old tourist lodge building in south Mizoram’s Lunglei town to cater to the need of four southern districts. 

RT-PCR laboratory was a long pressing demand of the southern districts amid surge in COVID-19 cases.  

Inaugurating the makeshift laboratory, Lalthangliana said it was a milestone in health infrastructure development for the people of Mizoram’s southern districts. 

Citing that the government is giving priority to the southern districts, the health minister said the construction of Rs 8 crore multi-purpose laboratory block is being undertaken within the premises of Lunglei civil hospital to cater to the needs of the people. 

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He said that State Institute of Rural Development (SIRD) will be set up at Pukpui in Lunglei and the southern campus of Mizoram University in Lunglei, which has been already notified in January, will soon become functional.   

The newly opened makeshift RT-PCR laboratory was constructed with funds from Medical and Public Health (Departmental Minor Work during 2021-22) and India COVID-19 Emergency Response & Health System Preparedness Package: Phase-II (ECRP-II package). 

According to a health department official, Rs 66.65 lakh under Medical and Public Health (Departmental Minor Work during 2021-22) was used for the renovation of the building. 

Rs 30 lakh was received under ‘India COVID-19 Emergency Response & Health System Preparedness Package: Phase-II (ECRP-II package)’ for the project, he said. 

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Besides, the Thermo Fisher 7500 RT-PCR machine worth around Rs 20 lakh installed in the laboratory was donated by Congress MLA from Thorang constituency Zodintluanga Ralte, he said. 

With the new RT-PCR laboratory, Mizoram will now have two RT-PCR laboratories. 

The first RT-PCR laboratory was installed at Zoram Medical College (ZMC) atFalkawn near Aizawl last year.  

Lalthangliana also opened a Dedicated COVID Health Centre at Lunglei civil hospital complex on Thursday. 

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