Senegalese Lab To Produce $1 Coronavirus Self-Test Kits For Millions of Africans
Unlike Europe and North America, Africa still has the opportunity to contain its coronavirus outbreaks and protect its fragile healthcare systems.
Thanks to an ingenious pocket-sized test kit which will be largely manufactured in Senegal, comprehensive preventative testing could be commonplace in every African country within a few months.
Working with UK-based rapid diagnostics company Mologics, a Dakar-based diagnostics manufacturing facility will soon be producing 8 million tests a year for African governments, the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization and the WHO.
The finger-prick tests will use saliva to test for virus antigens and blood to test for the virus antibodies. If a line appears on the test, the patient has tested positive for the coronavirus, similar to how a pregnancy test works.
It will cost $1 and only take ten minutes to administer at home, without requiring a clinician or a nurse.
Senegal has the best rate of recovery for coronavirus patients in Africa and the third best in the world, ahead of the United States and France.
Image: A worker in a secure laboratory researches the coronavirus at Dakar’s Institut Pasteur © Seyllou/AFP/Getty