The Private sector-led Coalition Against COVID-19 has ordered for 250,000 supplies for tests and another 150,000 extraction kits to fast-track molecular testing for the deadly coronavirus, noting that the reality of the situation at hand was such that efforts must be put together with no stone left unturned in dealing with the scourge.
The coalition also disclosed that no less than 1.7 million households would benefit from its food relief package as part of complementary efforts to help alleviate the effects of the lockdown and restrictions adopted by governments across the nation.
Briefing newsmen in Lagos on the group’s activities in helping the Federal Government halt the spread of the virus, leaders of CACOVID stated that the coalition has set up isolation centers in five states of Lagos, Kano, Rivers, Borno and Enugu as well as FCT, while renovations of hospitals and medical supplies are being carried out in other states.
All the partners in CACOVID are ready to roll out in all parts of the country having commenced building and equipping of isolation centers in some states. There are currently three testing platforms for molecular testing in Nigeria, one of which is the “Open PCR machines”, which the Coalition has ordered for 10 units, with eight laboratories certified to conduct COVID-19 tests.
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“Open PCR machine is currently the standard platform. Eight labs in Nigeria are certified to conduct COVID-19 testing; 10 new PCR machines and 150,000 extraction kits have been ordered. The other is Roche Cobus Platform with 6 Machines in Nigeria, each capable of testing 960 tests at a time. Nigeria was on track to receive 38,000 but we have ordered 250,000. 10,000 tests ordered by UNICEF have arrived on Thursday, April 16. We also have Cepheid Gene Expert Machines – there are 400 machines installed in the country. 250 are expected to be functional with trained lab technicians. Cepheid has developed a COVID-19 testing cartridge that has received FDA approval, and will begin shipping to Africa in two weeks. We have ordered 250,000 cartridges and expect shipment receipt in two weeks.” A member of the CACOVID team explained.