A healthcare worker collecting swab sample of an international passenger at Chennai airport.

A healthcare worker collecting swab sample of an international passenger at Chennai airport.

Chennai airport introduces rapid RT-PCR testing facility

Chennai airport has set up the rapid RT-PCR testing lab which will provide results in 30 minutes to passengers. The cost is fixed at ₹4,000 now and sources say it may be brought down in the coming weeks, sources said.

Officials of the Airports Authority of India (AAI) said the facility had been introduced for those travelling to West Asia as those countries had made it mandatory for passengers to carry RT-PCR negative certificate before boarding the flight.

“Earlier, we had only passengers arriving from Dubai, Kuwait or Abu Dhabhi but now we have a few departure flights too that resumed four days ago. We have four or five flights every day to Dubai. So far, we have been testing 200 to 250 passengers a day and we hope that when the international passenger traffic goes up, this number will also rise,” an official said. Some passengers feel that the fee for rapid RT-PCR test is high and should be brought down.

Passengers, both domestic and international, have been using the RT-PCR testing lab set up at the airport where results are available in 4 to 7 hours for a fee of ₹900 and for TrueNat test, it is ₹2,500 and the results come within 2-4 hours, the officials said.

Recently, the State government has made it mandatory for passengers arriving from Kerala to produce vaccination certificate or RT-PCR negative certificate.

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