The Head of the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology at Hamad Medical Cooperation (HMC) Dr. Einas Al Kuwari revealed that the daily laboratory capacity for (COVID-19) tests will reach 30,000 Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests by the end of July 2020, while the current laboratory capacity amounts to 20,000 daily tests.
Hamad Medical Laboratories perform various tests to diagnose the coronavirus (COVID-19), including Polymerase chain reaction (PCR), and serological tests, each of which has its uses according to the medical protocols.
Dr. Al Kuwari, in a statement to Qatar News Agency (QNA), said that Hamad Medical Laboratories, under the umbrella of the Hamad Medical Corporation and the Ministry of Public Health, are the main laboratories that have begun and are still conducting Coronavirus tests to cover all the needs of the state. Hamad Medical Laboratories conducted at least 300,000 tests since the start of the pandemic.
Dr. Al Kuwari added that the testing laboratory worked at the beginning of the pandemic around the clock with an initial operating capacity of 16 per cent compared to the current operating capacity of 100 per cent of male and female employees who were trained from various departments of medical laboratories and some other state institutions.
She also pointed out that Hamad Medical Laboratories worked hard to provide the latest advanced technical devices to ensure the speed of test results taking into account quality and safety, as the number of daily checks to detect coronavirus using PCR tests increased 75 times since the start of the pandemic.
Hamad laboratories also provide serological tests to deliver rapid results within 10 to 15 minutes. There is a laboratory serological test, which takes approximately one hour, whereby in these serological tests, consideration is given to following the medical protocols of methods of use.
Dr. Einas Al Kuwari announced the launch of two new laboratories by the Medical Laboratory Department of HMC. In addition to the main virus laboratory, two laboratories were opened to examine the Coronavirus in both Communicable Diseases Center (CDC) and Hamad General Hospital in order to increase the absorptive capacity and to ensure that work continues in any emergency without stopping.
There are also four laboratories dedicated to Coronavirus tests, which performs PCR tests and is used for emergency and urgent cases, this test takes two hours, she said, adding that these laboratories are located in Hamad General Hospital, Al Khor Hospital, Al Wakra Hospital and the Cuban Hospital.
She stressed that Hamad Medical Laboratories were able to overcome the challenges that emerged with the beginning of the Corona pandemic by providing all the equipment and resources required to conduct the tests accurately, thanks to the great support from the country that provided everything needed to facilitate the work and increase the absorptive capacity of the laboratories.
She also noted the various national institutions’ cooperation, which have contributed significantly to the support of medical laboratories, which has had a direct impact on reaching a large number of daily tests.
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