A private sector-led Coalition Against COVID-19 (CACOVID), has donated more extraction kits and silicon swabs to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) toward enhancing COVID-19 tests in the country.
Herbert Wigwe, Managing Director, Access Bank, in a statement on Sunday in Lagos, said CACOVID released 140 extraction kits, which translates to 14,000 tests to strengthen government’s response to tackle and mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Wigwe said that the coalition was concerned that the availability of test kits had become a challenge in fighting the virus.
According to him, before the end of May, CACOVID will bring in more test kits to increase testing capacity by 32,500.
“The reality of the situation at hand is such that efforts must be put together, with no stone left unturned, in dealing with the Coronavirus pandemic,” he said.
Wigwe pledged CACOVID’s support to fight the spread of Coronavirus in Kano and other northern parts of the country.
“We will continue to pull together resources across industries to provide technical and operational support while providing funding and building advocacy through aggressive awareness drives to tackle the menace of COVID-19 in the country,” he added.
Responding, Mrs Olajumoke Babatunde, Deputy Director, Central Public Health Laboratory, NCDC, commended CACOVID for the provision of the test kits to increase Nigeria’s testing capacity.
According to her, the donation is coming at a very critical period when the country needs more test kits to determine the number of cases in Nigeria.
“We will not be able to know the status of a COVID-19 patient without testing.
“When we have kits available and we are able to test on time, we will be able to meet our turnaround time and this will translate to prompt diagnosis and treatment,” Babatunde said.
She said early diagnosis and treatment would assist to reduce the spread of the virus in the country, adding that CACOVID’s donation would help make NCDC’s task easier.