On May-12, Prime minister Narendra Modi addressed the Nation on the ongoing fight against COVID-19 not only he announced the financial stimulus package of Rs 20 lakh crore but also promoted the use of the local products.
From the day this lockdown started India was facing two problems, first is a shortage of the Viral Transport Medium kits also known as VTM kit testing swab and the price of the swab. The price of the swab is nearly Rs 17 per unit as we imported them from China & USA. The VTM tube consists of 2 cotton swabs and a test tube. Testube consists of the media. This media is in the form of solution into which the extracted sample is immersed and then sent to the lab for testing purposes.
While India facing this issue, Ravi Kapoor, Secretary, Textile connected with Reliance, J&J, and requested to check whether the nation can produce medical swab. India’s earbud manufacturers started working to supply ‘Made in India’ nasal and throat swabs for testing of the coronavirus the issue is fixed in only 10 days.
We used to import collection swabs at Rs. 17 frm China. Govt contacted the largest Indian polyester manufacturer to locally design swab. Got the design & material approved from NIV & gave manufacturing orders to MSMEs. Today, India manufacturers these at Rs. 2!
Vocal for Local! pic.twitter.com/V3h6lNch3Z
— Varun Jhaveri (@Varun_Jhaveri) May 16, 2020
The major two industries came forward, while reliance took care of raw material and J&J provided Research and development, engineering for manufacturing along with Scientific expertise.
As J&J was manufacturing a similar product in earbuds and reliance provide Custom-made polyester staple fibre. This decreased cost of manufacturing swab by nearly 90%, Costing swab for only Rs 1.7 per unit has seen.
The manufacturing process of the cotton swab is taken care of by the Third Party manufacturer of J&J Vasai based company name Adi enterprise. This cotton swab is approved by the National Institute of Virology, Pune.