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COVID-19: FG scales up capacity to conduct tests, for rapid diagnostics

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The Federal Ministry of Health (FMOH), has scaled up its capacity to conduct tests for the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Kaduna and Kano states.

The Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, made this known on Sunday on Channels Television, Programme “Politics Today”, while, speaking on the COVID-19 pandemic in Nigeria..

The Nigeria News Agency, reports that the FMOH also said it will upgrade its laboratories in Oyo, Ebonyi and Borno, to ensure prompt case management of epidemic and pandemic outbreaks in the country.

NAN, reports that Nigeria had earlier set up five Molecular laboratories with this capacity.

These are located in the NCDC’s National Reference laboratory,Abuja, Irrua Specialist Teaching Hospital, Redeemers University Nigeria, Lagos University Teaching Hospital and Nigerian Institute of Medical Research, Lagos

Ehanire disclosed that the Virology Laboratory of the University College Hospital, Ibadan,  has now been aded tot the five functional Molecular laboratories in the country.

He said that the six molecular laboratories have the capacities to detect the ongoing Coronavirus (COVID-19), pandemic outbreak.

He noted that this would ensure prompt case management of COVID-19 pandemic outbreaks in the country.

“We do targeted testing majorly.Targeted testing helps us to be more focused .We want to be as fast as possible in curtailing the spread,” he said.

He disclosed that the government would be collaborating with a private laboratory in Kaduna state to enable the state to also test for the virus.

Ehanire said that samples from cases that meet the case definition would be collected by the State Epidemiology Team, and transported through a defined process from the state to one of the testing laboratories.

“The inclusion of more laboratory will increase the capacity to detect cases in the country, he noted..

He, however disclosed that a Molecular laboratory in Abakaliki, Ebonyi state would

soon be

set up and would also have the capacity to test for COVID-19

The minister said that each laboratory would continue to provide diagnostic support for a defined number of states in the country.

Meanwhile, the Minister said that the restriction of movement in Lagos, Ogun, and the Federal Capital Territory, was necessary to avoid the spread of COVID-19 in the country.

Edited By: Sadiya Hamza
(NAN)

Abujah Racheal: is a graduate and a professionally trained journalist, with experience in national news reporting/editing and verification at the News Agency of Nigeria. NNN is a Nigerian online news portal that publishes breaking news in Nigeria, and across the world. Our journalists are honest, fair, accurate, thorough and courageous in gathering, reporting and interpreting news in the best interest of the public, because truth is the cornerstone of journalism and they strive diligently to ascertain the truth in every news report. Contact: editor[at]nnn.com.ng