FDA OKs field testing of coronavirus test kit developed by UP scientists
MANILA, Philippines—The Food and Drug Administration has issued a certificate of exemption for the coronavirus test kit developed by Filipino scientists.
The kit, developed by scientists from the University of the Philippines National Institute of Health (UPNIH), is cleared for field testing and gene sequencing at the Philippine Genome Center, the FDA said in a press release.
“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,” Domingo said.
“Furthermore, this will provide greater access to a less costly diagnostic procedure,” he said.
The project is funded by the Department of Science and Technology.
As of Monday, there are already 24 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the country.
Edited by MUF
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