Medical Council cautions against use of non-validated rapid test kits for COVlD-19 testing



Dr Tosan Erhabor, the Registrar, Medical Laboratory Council of Nigeria (MLSCN), has cautioned against the use of any non-validated rapid/Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test kits for COVID-19 testing in Nigeria.

Erhabor, also the Chief Executive Officer of MLSCN, said this on Wednesday in Abuja while briefing newsmen on the outcome of the second batch of Pre-Market Validation of COVID-19 test kits.

He said that the council would sanction any importer, dealer or scientist found wanting in this regard.

“Any of them caught will be arrested and tried in the court in line with the law of the country.

“We are working with security agencies to see that the issue is properly managed.’’

On private laboratories, he said eight private-owned laboratories had been accredited to carry out COVID-19 test in the country.

He noted that no COVID-19 rapid test kit had been approved for use in Nigeria for testing of the virus.

The registrar, however, urged local and foreigner manufacturers of COVID-19 test kits to take urgent steps to improve on standardisation of their products.

He urged them to improve on the product to meet the minimum validation requirement to guarantee reliable, accurate and timely test results.

“The 22 rapid test kits being reported had not met the expected performance characteristics of sensitivity to qualify them for deployment for the purposes of testing in disease surveillance and routine diagnosis,” he said.

He noted that non-rapid detection test kits had sensitivities and specificities below the acceptable minimum of 95 per cent and are, therefore, unsuitable for use as In-Vitro Diagnostics (IVDs) in Nigeria.

Consequently, the Registrar emphasised that for diagnosis, none of the antigen or antibody detection test kits was recommended for SARSCOV-2 infection testing in Nigeria.

In addition, he said MLSCN had recommended that all indigenously-developed test kits for COVID-19 in Nigeria should be submitted for validation to support standardisation and promote reliable and accurate test results.

“In view of these findings, it is pertinent to recommend the establishment and institutional participation in External Quality Assessment Programme for COVID-19 testing in Nigeria,’’ he said.

Erhabor appreciated the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, the Federal Ministry of Health and the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) for maintaining the gold standard by deploying PCR for COVID-19 testing as well as supporting MLSCN in carrying out its mandate.

NAN reports that the vision of the council is to be a world acclaimed regulatory agency driving the culture of quality and efficient health laboratory care to the public and ensuring high academic standards in training institutions.

The council aims at achieving the vision by strengthening health laboratory systems and professional practice for quality services through strategic regulations and accreditation.

Edited By: Abiodun Oluleye/Ese E. Ekama
Source: NAN





#EndSARS: Lagos council unveils N10m relief fund for victims of violence Emir of Wase wants laws supporting traditional rulers’ roles How I lost 2 pregnancies in SARS custody, teacher tells Lagos Judicial Panel Togolese University confers honorary doctorate degree on Gov. Matawalle Ebonyi Govt urges fish farmers to embrace modern packaging Kano Govt. restates commitment to sanitation, hygiene #EndSARS: Gombe Govt. inaugurates 11-member commission of inquiry President Buhari mourns Igwe Alex Nwokedi Ebonyi Govt. tasks fish farmers on improved packaging Road accident: 2 NSCDC personnel die, 1 injured in Ondo State World women tennis number 2 tests positive for COVID-19 Lawmaker appeals to Gov. Abiodun to urgently fix urban roads in Obafemi Owode LG  #EndSARS Protest: Ondo Senator promises to rebuild Police Area Command, others Jigawa Govt. distributes COVID-19 palliatives to 1, 500 PWDs AEDC/TCN working to restore normal power supply to parts of FCT — GM Mourinho says Spurs fans cannot expect same Bale from 7 years ago Soldiers didn’t kill 4 persons, dump bodies inside pond in Jos – DHQ Artisans in 11 states, FCT receive N30,000 one-time grant -Presidency   67 persons bag 6 months jail term for violating sanitation law in Nasarawa Diaspora Nigerians write President Buhari over #EndSARS protest Insecurity: Diaspora Nigerians urge FG to overhaul security apparatus to tackle challenges COVID-19: Idu 500-bed treatment, Isolation centre still operational — FCTA Surprise package Cadiz join Real Sociedad on top of La Liga Neymar out until at least mid-November, PSG coach says Schalke 04 re-signs jungler “Gilius” Schalke 04 held by Stuttgart as winless run stretches to 22 games NCDC confirms 170 new COVID-19 cases, 3 deaths Wolves beat Crystal Palace to climb to third in EPL Ex-lawmaker urges Ogun, Lagos govts to repair Abeokuta expressway Looters of NYSC camp will be apprehended, prosecuted, says police chief Flood: Bayelsa Govt begins technical study to tackle impact FG vows to discourage physicians’ “brain drain” from the country UN Chief calls for peaceful presidential polls in Ivory Coast Top two seeds Djokovic, Thiem ousted in Vienna Open quarter-finals COVID-19: Expert calls for campaign to help uplift Nigerians’ spirits. Curfew forces Belgium to move home venue for internationals Minister condemns destruction of medical equipment in Kogi Ronaldo recovers from COVID-19 infection England’s “Toothless Tiger” dies at 78 #EndSARS: Gov. Okowa says Nigerians need collective responsibility to rebuild the nation #ENDSARS: FRSC boss orders immediate resumption of operational activities EndSARS: Police say protesters attacked 205 public, private facilities Ekiti APC felicitates with ABUAD Founder, S’East governors, youths call for reduction of security roadblocks in region Makinde’s administration has paid N2.9 bn gratuity – Commissioner CSO calls for effective management, prioritisation of water, sanitation Senator extols virtues of Afe Babalola at 91 Gov. Akeredolu orders 7-day ultimatum for surrender of arms, ammunition in wrong hands President Buhari welcomes international partnership to spur development Navy Sailing Club to stage 3 races in November