Gift of the Givers donates rapid COVID-19 testing instrument to UKZN

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Gift of the Givers donated an advanced instrument to conduct rapid COVID-19 tests to the University of KwaZulu-Natal’s College of Health Sciences.

The instrument processes test and gives results in a matter of hours.

UKZN ‘s acting Dean Professor Anil Chuturgoon says the instrument is however not suitable for mass testing.

Chuturgoon says, “I must caution that it is not going to be the answer for mass testing because in that time you can only test for patients exposed to COVID-19, the advantage is that it allows you to identify persons at risk and it gives you quick yes/no answer. In terms of mass testing it doesn’t give you the volume that you can do with traditional testing.”

He also urged students to exercise extreme caution to ensure they do not spread COVID-19.

“The need to abide by the regulations of social distancing and also sanitize, and wearing masks all the time, the other issue is that when they come to contact with patients or people that maybe positive I think they need to notify the university so we can test them to ensure that they are negative and they don’t carry it to other people. They have to be very careful when going back home, especially dealing with individuals who might be positive and they could have a parent family that could have comorbidity,” Chuturgoon says.

Chuturgoon added saying “I think these are the very special times, I am sure our students are at the level where they exercise extreme caution.”

Checklist before testing for COVID-19:

Used COVID-19 test kits found dumped next to Eastern Cape highway

Meanwhile, a large number of discarded used coronavirus test kits were picked up by health laboratory service officials in the Eastern Cape.

The kits were apparently dumped next to the N2 between East London and King Williamstown.

The discarded test kits had been discovered by a passer-by. They were still in plastic sleeves and contained the details of the person from whom the sample was taken.

At this stage it is not clear how the kits ended up on the side of a national road.

The Eastern Cape health department’s spokesperson, Sizwe Kupelo, says investigations are under way but the matter is between the National Health Laboratory Services and the courier company they use.

“We are working with them to establish the facts of what happened, because it happened, while the items were in transit while outside our facilities, so NHLS has to answer together with the courier company they were using,” he says.