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Abia unveils first COVID-19 testing laboratory as Ikpeazu recovers

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Abia State yesterday disclosed that its first laboratory for testing samples of COVID-19 infection has commenced operation at the Abia State Specialist Hospital & Diagnostic Centre, Amachara near Umuahia.

This is coming as the state announced that Governor Okezie Ikpeazu, who has been undergoing treatment had recovered and is being expected back in the state after the stipulated isolation and treatment period.

The laboratory had been approved by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) whose officials inspected it on Monday and supervised analysis of the first test samples, which results tallied with those obtained from NCDC’s Abuja facility.

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Commissioner for Health, Dr. Joe Osuji, disclosed that other testing centres would commence at Aba, Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Umuahia and Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, Umudike.

Director of the Amachara Testing Laboratory, Dr. Okorie Onuka, said the facility could produce 200 test results daily at the rate of one per 45 minutes.

Providing an update on the state’s COVID-19 situation, Commissioner for Information, Chief John Okiyi Kalu, said of the 252 confirmed cases in the state so far, 91 were discharged from the Amachara Isolation Centre, stressing that there had been no death in its isolation centres.

Also, Consultant Community Physician and Medical Director of the Abia State Health Management Board, Dr. Ijeoma Nduka, hinted that in some conditions, asymptomatic patients could self-isolate in their homes under close monitoring.

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