Minister inaugurates molecular diagnostics and genomics lab
Newborns to be screened for various diseases under PPP mode in Vellore
Health Minister C. Vijaya Baskar on Saturday announced the implementation of a scheme to screen 77,000 newborn babies in Vellore district in the State under the public-private partnership mode along with Neuberg Ehrlich Laboratories.
Speaking at the inauguration of Neuberg Ehrlich’s molecular diagnostics and genomics lab in Royapettah, he said that around 43 diseases in newborns could be diagnosed using just a drop of blood. “So far, we have been sending samples to NIMHANS, Bengaluru or to Pune for tests. Now this lab will conduct the tests. This is part of our efforts to improve infant mortality rates. We are planning to expand the facility to all the districts,” he said. The event also marks the 80th anniversary celebrations of the country’s oldest laboratory. The laboratory will also screen babies delivered at the Institute of Child Health, Egmore. The Vellore project is on a trial basis and is being implemented under the Tamil Nadu Health Sector Project phase II with World Bank funding. A total of ₹1 crore has been allocated for the Vellore component, the Minister said. “Under the PPP mode, the government will bear the cost of the test for babies born at government facilities including the ICH and in Vellore district and the diagnosis would be done in just one day by the lab,” said G.S.K. Velu, Chairman, Neuberg Diagnostics Pvt Ltd.
Dr. A. T. Arasar Seeralar, Director, ICH Egmore and Indra Subramanyam, Vice Chairman, Neuberg Ehrlich, were present on the occasion.
Health Minister C. Vijaya Baskar at the Neuberg Ehrlich Clinical Laboratories in Chennai on Saturday.