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Number of accredited Covid-19 testing laboratories reduced

COVID 19 Virus

Kampala, Uganda |  THE INDEPENDENT |  The Ministry of Health has revised the list of accredited laboratories allowed to test for COVID-19. 

In May the ministry accredited eleven laboratories based on the dynamics of infection spread of the disease and the availability of testing reagents. However the number has now been reduced to nine. 

The laboratories are; the Uganda Virus Research Institute, the Central Public Health Laboratory, Makerere University, Mukula mobile laboratory, Tororo mobile laboratory, Adjumani mobile laboratory, Infectious Disease Institute, Mildmay and Lancet laboratories. 

The laboratories that have been scrapped off the list include MBN Clinical laboratories and Medipal International Laboratories that were previously part of three private laboratories allowed to test. Others are the Uganda Virus Research Institute Plague Laboratory in Arua district, Rakai Health Services Laboratory, Gulu University and the laboratory at Fort Portal Regional Referral Hospital laboratory.

Dr Susan Nabadda, the Executive Director of the Central Public Health Laboratory and the head of COVID-19 testing says the number of laboratories testing for COVID-19 has reduced to a lack of testing reagents.

Officials from health ministry declined to reveal the reason why the previously accredited research facilities were removed from the list.

In an earlier interview with URN, the director of MBN Dr Freddie Bwanga said that while they were ready to start testing and were equipped with all testing re-agents and kits, they could not start testing without getting formal communication from the health ministry.

Last month, Dr Nabadda said that the laboratories begun testing, she said the labs were not ready on administration level to start testing.

The reduction in testing laboratories comes at a time when the country is experiencing delays in the release of results due to the rise in the number is cases daily.

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