COVID-19 testing facilities to be established in seven more regions

Ministry of Health has signed the contracts to establish COVID-19 testing facilities in seven more regions of the Maldives.

The contracts to establish new COVID-19 testing facilities were signed during a special function held at National Emergency Operation Centre (NEOC). The contracts were signed for the installation of a PCR testing machine in Kulhudhuffushi Regional Hospital, and GeneXpert testing facilities in Ungoofaaru Regional Hospital, Gan Regional Hospital, Dr. Abdul Samad Memorial Hospital in Thinadhoo, Shaviyani Atoll Hospital, Baa Atoll Hospital and Gaafu Alifu Atoll Hospital. The cartridges to be used for the GeneXpert machines were handed over to the health ministry at the function by the Representative of World Health Organisation (WHO) to the Maldives Dr. Arvind Mathur.

Speaking at the function, Minister of Health Abdulla Ameen said the Maldives has come a long way in conducting COVID-19 tests, noting the first samples obtained from the Maldives were sent to India to be tested for COVID-19. Noting COVID-19 testing facilities have now been established in different regions across the Maldives, the minister acknowledged and appreciated the assistance from WHO in the efforts of the Maldives to strengthen the response to COVID-19.

With the latest establishments, nine regions will now have COVID-19 testing facilities, including Male' City and Addu City. Meanwhile, the PCR machine to be installed in Kulhudhuffushi Regional Hospital would be the fifth PCR machine to conduct COVID-19 tests in the Maldives. Currently, PCR testing is available at Indira Gandhi Memorial Hospital (IGMH), ADK Hospital and the forensic laboratory of Maldives Police Service (MPS) in Male' City, as well as from Addu Equatorial Hospital in Addu City.