Nigeria scientists have just developed a Covid-19 test kit that is cheaper and faster, this kit will enable testing to be easily carried out in places that have faced kit shortages. According to the National Institute of Medical Research (NIMR), the test kit can generate results within 40 minutes.
This new test kit isn’t only faster, it is also cheaper than other PCR tests that cost a lot. The diagnostic test kit is about $25 and a mobile machine can be used to analyze samples. The agency revealed that this mobile machine can be operated by personnel with minimal training.
We saw the need for more testing outfits, especially one that can give results in a short time because hospitals were refusing to treat patients without Covid-19 results.Babatunde Salako, the director of NIMR.
It was also noted that the machine used wasn’t the common PCR. The machine was purchased and the developed the kit that will be used with the machine. Furthermore, the detection rate of this new testing kit is a bit lower than the PCR. These test kits developed by Nigeria scientists is a proof that the country is working towards reducing the number of coronavirus cases.
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Nigeria imports PCR test kits from China and these kits aren’t enough to test most of its population. The country has the largest population in Africa and only about 500,000 people have been tested, according to figures from local health authorities.
The PCR test is the commonest and most accurate diagnostic test, however, it requires expensive instruments, and well-trained lab technicians to perform and this has resulted in shortages and a testing gap across the globe.
We thought this one was very important as it will diversify the way testing is done. With this one, all the people in villages and remote areas can be tested by moving the machine to those villages.salako
Nigeria has had over 59,000 cases of Covid-19 and over 1,000 deaths have been recorded as of October 2. Health authorities have also reported that the country is experiencing a declining number of cases, isolation centers, being closed in the country.
In Nigeria, testing is free in state-owned laboratories, but there are only a few such facilities and they are concentrated in major cities. In some cases, health officials had to transfer samples to other states to get results since there is a shortage of kits.
Salako maintained that the test kits will be produced in large quantities once they are validated by the Nigeria Center for Disease Control and the Medical Laboratory Science Council of Nigeria.