Kochi: The Kerala High Court upheld the state government's decision to cap the price of RT-PCR tests for COVID, observing that the price cut serves the present situation.
The private laboratories have moved the HC against the State government's order reducing the price of RT-PCR tests from Rs 1, 700 to Rs 500.
A single bench accepted the contention of the government that the decision was based on a study conducted by the Kerala Medical Services Corporation. The government pleader also said the prices of the tests in other states range from ₹400 to ₹600.
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The petitioners argued that the decision was taken without consultation with private laboratories, and they will incur huge losses if they get a high volume of tests. But the government contended that a testing kit costs ₹270, and the rest can be considered as the fee for human resources, etc.
"The government arrived at the rate after conducting the market study. We also found that charges in many other states like Haryana, Telangana, and Uttarakhand are within the same range. Considering the present situation, we do not find any reason to stay the government order," the court said.
Many laboratories stopped RT-PCR tests citing losses. Later, the government threatened to confiscate them and prompted 10 leading private laboratories to move the court two weeks back.