New Delhi: Two Chinese pharma companies, which supplied five lakh rapid testing kits for COVID-19, said they were very disappointed over negative reports about their products in India, days after the Indian Council of Medical Research asked the states not to use them over poor quality. In separate statements, Guongzhou Wondfo Biotech and Livzon Diagnostics said their products were being used by various countries and that ensuring strict quality control has been a focus area for them. The ICMR on April 27 asked the states and union territories to stop using the test kits procured from the two Chinese companies due to "wide variations" in their performance while conducting tests in "field conditions". India procured around 500,000 rapid antibody test kits from the two Chinese firms nearly two weeks back and they were distributed to several states reporting rising cases of the coronavirus infection. Following the decision by the ICMR, China said it was "deeply concerned" over the evaluation result of the rapid testing kits supplied to India by two Chinese companies and hoped that New Delhi will resolve the issue "reasonably and properly". "We feel very disappointed with the result from ICMR," Livzon Diagnostics said in its reaction. The company also wondered whether the kits were stored at the temperature recommended by it. "The 'field conditions' were not yet disclosed and as we know, there could be so many factors that impact the exact performance of diagnostic test kits. The storage and transport temperature conditions are the first we need to emphasize, where we noticed in India recently temperature started to rise up," the company said. In its reaction, the Guongzhou Wondfo said that the kits provide for preliminary test results and should not be used as the sole basis for treatment or any other decision. The statements by the two companies were released to the media by an official of the Chinese embassy here. In its communication, the ICMR asked the states and union territories to return the kits to the central government so that they can be sent back to the suppliers. The government said not a single rupee will be lost as payments were not made to the Chinese suppliers of the kits.
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