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Atal Dulloo inaugurates NAT-PCR at GMC, Srinagar

SRINAGAR, AUGUST 28; Financial Commissioner, Health and Medical Education Department, Atal Dulloo, today inaugurated State-of-Art Nucleic Acid Testing (NAT-PCR) facility at Government Medical College Srinagar for safer quality blood transfusion funded under National Health Mission in the UT.

Mission Director, National Health Mission, J&K, Bhupinder Kumar,  Principal Govt. Medical College, Srinagar, Dr Samia Rashid, Head of Department Blood & Transfusion Medicine GMC, Srinagar, Dr. Rubi Reshi State Nodal Officer, NHM, Dr. Mohammad Shafi Koka, were also present on the occasion.

Speaking on the occasion, Atal Dulloo said that with the implementation of Nobel Prize winning NAT-PCR technology, the Blood Transfusion safety in the UT will now be of International standards. This facility shall help in early detection of transfusion transmission infections like HIV, Hepatits “B” and Hepatitis “C” Virus. He said that, NAT testing facility has been funded by National Health Mission and all the blood donations in three major tertiary care hospitals viz; SMHS, Lal Ded, Bone & Joint Hospital shall be screened, he added.

Bhupinder Kumar, Mission Director NHM, J&K said that by adopting this technology as an integral part of blood transfusion services, safety of patients and wellbeing of the people of Union Territory shall be ensured by providing an additional layer of safety to blood recipients. The first such facility in the Union Territory has already been inaugurated on June 14th at Govt. Medical College, Jammu ensuring the highest level of blood safety in the region, he added.

Principal GMC Srinagar said NAT-PCR helps to detect the presence of life threatening viruses HIV, HBV and HCV that may be present in the blood donated in window period of the infection, and can be missed by conventional screening technologies which ensures additional safety to blood recipients. There are many reports highlighting the incidence of Transfusion Transmitted Infections (TTIs), especially in the patients receiving multiple transfusions in critical conditions like Thalassemia, Cancer or Cardiac surgeries.

Dr. Rubi Reshi, Head of Department, Blood & Transfusion Medicine GMC, Srinagar said that, “Blood donations screened with world class NAT PCR technology will reduce the risk of infection in 3 patients, as every unit of blood can be transfused to three people when separated into components.

Meanwhile, NAT-PCR, Plasma Bank was also inaugurated by the Financial Commissioner, H&ME on the occasion.

Dr Mohammad Shafi Koka, State Nodal Officer, NHM, J&K presented vote of thanks on the occasion.

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