Indians are hesitant to get tested for Covid-19 even as the government increases capacity

Testing testing.
Testing testing.
Image: REUTERS/Amit Dave
We may earn a commission from links on this page.

As India races ahead of 4 million coronavirus cases, many people still avoid getting tested.

Nearly 50% of Indians now know at least one person who has experienced Covid-19 symptoms but has chosen not to get tested, according to a survey by LocalCircles, a community-led social media engagement platform.

This is despite the fact that India has been increasing its testing capacity. In Delhi, for instance, chief minister Arvind Kejriwal has removed the need for a doctor’s prescription for a Covid-19 test.

The unwillingness to get tested co-exists with the exponential increase in Covid-19 cases in India. Over 75% of the respondents said they know at least one person who contracted the virus.

Compared to May, when India was still under a stringent lockdown, this is a 1000% increase.

A possible reason for this hesitation to get tested could be that Indians are afraid of the prospect of being hospitalised.