COVID-19: NCDC Reveals New Strategies For Coronavirus Testing In Nigeria

Channels Television  
Updated April 17, 2020
A file photo of the NCDC Director General, Chikwe Ihekweazu.


The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has been explaining what it has doing regarding testing COVID-19 cases in the country.

In a live briefing by the Presidential Task Force on Friday, the Director-General of the NCDC, Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu, said the agency has developed a new testing strategy that will be made available to the public.

While noting that coronavirus requires a lot of very critical thinking, Ihekweazu said it may appear that Nigeria’s response to testing cases of coronavirus is slow.

According to him, the agency is making good use of validated technology at its disposal to ramp up testing measures regarding the virus.

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“We aim to increase access to testing as new testing modalities also become available. The success of this strategy is dependent on our ability to leverage on the existing infrastructure for testing but also to rapidly include testing muds that are available through other disease programmes.

“First is to expand our existing laboratory networks as we have been doing and announcing regularly. Secondly is to use labs that have been previously used for HIV testing.

“And yesterday we got our first consignment of reagent for those tests, that piece of equipment. We will be trying it out at the National reference Lab and then scaling up very rapidly.

“The third strategy is to use the point of testing generally called mass testing in their aesthetics. So we have had our challenges.

“Like with every other thing, it is not always the first person off the block that wins the race. So we have quietly put our heads down, worked with our partners, developed our strategies, made our plans and now we are ready to scale testing in Nigeria,” he said.

Speaking further, the NCDC boss said the national strategy to scale up COVID-19 testing in Nigeria is ready.

He explained that the agency receives offers from individuals and corporate bodies regarding testing of coronavirus cases, asking anyone that has useful information or advice on testing to come forward with their proposals.

Ihekweazu also wants Nigerians to check up the national strategy as it relates to COVID-19 testing on the website

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