Scientists from Nigeria have managed to develop a cheaper and faster COVID-19 test kit. It enables testing to be made in places where there are kit shortages and where people don’t get tested enough.
This new test is cheaper – way cheaper than the other PCR test, which is the most common type of test. It gives the result in less than 40 minutes, according to the Nigerian Institute of Medical Research (NIMR).
The kit will cost less than $25, and the samples will be analyzed using a mobile machine. This machine can be operated by low-skilled personnel that does not have certain training for it.
Babatunde Salako, the director of NIMR, stated: “We saw the need for more testing outfits, especially one that can give results in a short time because hospitals were refusing to treat patients without Covid-19 results. We bought the machine and adapted the kit that we developed to work with this machine. It is meant for the diagnosis of other pathogens.” He continued with the fact that the rate of the NIMR test kit is a bit lower than the PCR but good enough for now.
As of now, Nigeria imports PCR test kits from China, and they did not get enough for its 200 million population.
Salako stated that this test is essential because it would show the differences between the ways in which the testing is done. With this test, all the people in villages and remote areas can easily be tested by getting the machine to those places.
Nigeria has more than 59,000 cases of Covid-19. There are also more than 1,000 deaths, according to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control.