Nigeria develops capacity to conduct 3,000 coronavirus tests daily

April 16, 2020
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The Nigerian government is beginning to make progress in the fight to contain the spread of coronavirus in the country. The country has developed higher capacity to conduct coronavirus test. The government also expanded approach to include house-to-house community test, at the moment in FCT, Abuja. The test centres have been increased to 13 while daily test capacity has been increased to 3,000.

Though, this is far below the intervention in South Africa which has developed capacity to test 30,000 persons daily as the South African government deployed 67 mobile test centres.

The Director-General of the Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC), Dr. Chikwe Iheweazu, at the daily briefing of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 on Wednesday, disclosed that Nigeria now has the capacity to test 3,000 persons daily.

He, however, lamented that the major challenge is getting the right samples for testing.

Iheweazu stated: “We now have the capacity of testing 3,000 per day. That capacity is not being fully utilized. That is why I focused on Lagos State and the FCT and the efforts they are making to get more people tested and more samples in.

“We’ve improved testing capacity. The bottleneck now is getting the samples from the right people.”

The NCDC DG further disclosed that the government is setting up 20 healthcare facilities in Lagos soon.

He further narrated: “In Abuja, in certain communities, we are going door to door and collecting samples from people who have an acute respiratory infection… collecting samples from people that think they have an acute respiratory infection.”

There is need for the government to move fast to avert coronavirus epidemic in Nigeria which may overwhelm health facilities in the country.

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