Uganda unveils home-made coronavirus testing kits

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File photo: Thursday, Feb. 20, 2020 2020 testing kits are displayed on a worktop in Johannesburg where a workshop was held for delegates from across Africa on laboratory confirmation of COVID-19 in suspected human cases. Across Africa, steps are being taken to prepare for and to reduce the effects of the spread of the new coronavirus. (AP Photo/Denis Farrell).
File photo: Thursday, Feb. 20, 2020 2020 testing kits are displayed on a worktop in Johannesburg where a workshop was held for delegates from across Africa on laboratory confirmation of COVID-19 in suspected human cases. Across Africa, steps are being taken to prepare for and to reduce the effects of the spread of the new coronavirus. (AP Photo/Denis Farrell).

Uganda is expected to launch locally developed rapid kits for COVID-19 screening.
According to Dr. Misaki Wayengera, the lead developer, staff and students at Makerere University will be among the first to receive the rapid antibody test kits.

The kits arrive on campus today, March 17.

Dr. Wayengera, a researcher at the Department of Pathology at Makerere University, who also developed the testing kits for Ebola, said the new COVID-19 kits were approved by the National Drug Authority and that it passed the World Health Organisation specifications.
The kits are expected to give results in five minutes

“We took up the mandate to develop the kit because people were bothering us. We started working on the kit in February [last year],” he said. Asked about the price of the kits, Dr. Misaki said the cost will be around $1 (approximately Shs4,000) per kit.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Health yesterday flagged off a nationwide population-based survey for Covid-19, the third of its kind, to assess the prevalence of the infections.
Health Minister Jane Ruth Aceng said the study will focus on 5,100 households to determine the risk factors for severe disease, and define the rates of asymptomatic and symptomatic infection in the population.

 

Original article published by Uganda Daily Monitor

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