Nothing is free in Meghalaya. At a time when states like Karnataka, Haryana, Orissa and Gujarat (beside others) have slashed rates for RTPCR testing; the Meghalaya Government has put a cap of Rs 3,200 for every RT-PCR, CBNAAT and TrueNAT test. This rate is on a higher side as compared to other states. Even in Assam, the government has fixed such tests for Rs 2,200.
In recent times, Meghalaya has been recording an average of more than hundred positive cases daily. However, the testing for the coronavirus disease is likely to drop from its optimum levels as going forward the tests are chargeable.The visibly cash-strapped Meghalaya Government has also announced its decision that from October 16th anyone who enters the state from any of the entry points shall have to pay Rs 500 for the mandatory Rapid Antigen Test.
The testing for the coronavirus disease is likely to drop from its optimum levels as going forward the tests are chargeable.There are also plans to charge patients for meals at the dedicated Corona Care Centres.Deputy Chief Minister, Prestone Tynsong said, "Anybody who wants to go for an antigen test or a RT-PCR, CBNAAT or TrueNAT test will be charged for it as mandated by the state government. However, people belonging to BPL families shall be exempted from payment at the government facilities."
Recently, the Assembly's Committee on Women Empowerment has asked the state government to reconsider the rates for COVID-19 test. The state government has fixed Rs 3,200 for RT-PCR, CBNAAT and TrueNAT while for the Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) it has fixed Rs 500. The Meghalaya Congress has in the meantime urged the State Government to make the Rapid Antigen Test free (at the entry points) for atleast the permanent residents of the state.
Stating that those who are going out of the state are doing so due to some emergency, Congress Spokesperson Kennedy Cornelius Khyriem said, "In a pandemic and crisis like this, people go outside the state especially to Assam for things like medical treatment, job interviews or other pressing issues. Therefore it is not right to inconvenience them."