To boost COVID-19 testing across the country, the private sector-led Coalition against COVID-19 has donated N1.4 billion worth of medical supplies and additional 26,400 test kits sufficient to set up six fully functional COVID-19 medical laboratories in the fight against the pandemic.
Presenting the test kits and medical equipment at the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, Lagos office, the Chief Executive Officer, Aliko Dangote Foundation, Zouera Youssoufou, commended the efforts of the public health institute in the fight against the virus and expressed optimism that the test kits and medical supplies provided would further expand testing capabilities across the nation to meet critical health infrastructure need to combat the virus.
Youssoufou said: “On behalf of COCAVID, we are delighted to hand over the following items to you: MicPCR Realtime PCR Systems; RNA Extraction Kits; Well PCR Tube Strips; Well Semi-skirted PCR Plates; Pipette Tips; Oral and Nasal Swab Sets; Tongue Depressors, Viral Transport Media; Disposable Latex Medical Gloves etc.
“These items can sufficiently set up six medical laboratories and collect samples for over 26,400 people.”
Receiving the items, Deputy Director, NCDC, Lagos office, Olajumoke Babatunde, thanked CACOVID for the donation and described the gesture as integral to the successful of COVID-19 response in the country.
Babatunde said: “On behalf of the Director General of the NCDC, Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu, we want to thank you for your help in strengthening national COVID-19 response.
“We acknowledge and applaud your contributions.
“The capacity to test is very integral to the success of COVID-19 response by confirming, isolating, managing cases and containing outbreak in communities.
“The NCDC, DG had earlier communicated plans to expand testing to three million people in three months and donations like this will surely help in achieving this goal.”
Also speaking at the handover event, Team Lead, NCDC, Rapid Response Team Lagos, Dr. Kola Jinadu, said the continuous support and donations by CACOVID over the last months has saved so many lives and thanked the coalition for committing invaluable resources towards this cause.
This donation comes on the heels of the recent commissioning of a 150-bed isolation center in Yaba, Lagos, one of the 38 isolation centers set up across the nation to provide adequate treatment to those infected by the virus and stop the overall spread of the virus within the state.
Till date, CACOVID has committed billions of naira to build 38 fully equipped isolation centers across Nigeria with over 5,000 beds and critical medical equipment needed to fight the pandemic, exemplifying sustainable value addition from a partnership that truly works.