The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control says it has commenced the use of COBAS system for COVID-19 testing at its National Reference Laboratory.
The agency said by deploying the system, it is now able to test approximately 960 samples in eight hours.
The agency made this known via its verified Twitter handle @NCDCgov on Tuesday.
The agency had tweeted, “Today, we began the use of the COBAS system at the NCDC National Reference Laboratory, for #COVID19 testing
“Using this, approximately 960 samples can be tested in 8 hours
“This begins the second prong of our national strategy to integrate lab systems & increase testing capacity.”
According to web references, the COBAS System fully automates sample preparation with real-time polymerase chain reaction technology for amplification and detection.
It may be recalled that, sometime in March, the United States health regulators had approved it as a new coronavirus test that was expected to speed up by 10-fold the ability to test patients and improve the efforts to contain the contagion.
According to experts, a COBAS 8800 system is capable of testing 4,128 patients a day, while the 6800 version can test as many as 1,440.
The NCDC did not state the brand it uses.
Experts say testing is crucial to stem the spread of COVID-19 because it allows health care workers to identify the infected and quarantine them, even if they’re not experiencing many symptoms.
The World Health Organisation had also admonished countries to “test, test and test” if the war against the pandemic must be won.
Testing can potentially reduce the overall number of infections and buy time for drug makers to come up with better treatments and, ultimately, a vaccine, experts said.
The molecular testing is designed for high throughput applications such as viral load IVD monitoring, blood screening, and microbiology testing.
It reportedly offers highly efficient workflows from sample processing to result interpretation