FDA OKs COVID-19 test kits developed by UP scientists

By: Krissy Aguilar - Inquirer.net | March 10,2020 - 11:48 AM

MANILA, Philippines— Test kits for the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) which were developed by local scientists at the University of the Philippines (UP) have been approved for use by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

The FDA, in a statement Tuesday, said it has issued a certificate of exemption for the test kits developed by the University of the Philippines National Institute of Health (UP­NIH) which was funded by the Department of Science and Technology (DOST).

“This supports the CODE RED status raised by the Department of Health (DOH) and the recent declaration of President Rodrigo Duterte of a state of Public Health Emergency,” the FDA said.

President Rodrigo Duterte has declared a public health emergency over the threat of COVID-19.

The DOH had earlier raised Code Red Sublevel 1 after it confirmed the country’s first local transmission of COVID-19.

FDA Director General Rolando Enrique Domingo said the test kits will help monitor the growing number of patients suspected of having contracted COVID-19.

“The increasing number of reported COVID 19 cases will require immediate diagnosis and monitoring. This will provide our laboratories with technological reinforcement to accommodate the growing number of patients to be tested and aid in early screening of positive cases. Furthermore, this will provide greater access to a less costly diagnostic procedure,” Domingo said, as quoted in the statement.

As of Monday, there are already 24 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the country.

Edited by MUF

For more news about the novel coronavirus click here.

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