Sunday, May 31

Covid-19: Private labs ramp up sample collection and testing nationwide

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The programme will be rolled out in phases across the country with the first drive-through service starting tomorrow at Clinipath’s Headquarters in Klang. Bernama Photo

KUALA LUMPUR: A consortium of three associated laboratories namely Gribbles Pathology (Malaysia), Quantum Diagnostics and Clinipath Malaysia today launched the country’s largest Covid-19 collection and testing programme to assist the country’s effort to flatten the curve of infection.

In a statement today, the consortium chairman Tan Sri Datuk Dr Yahya Awang said the patients will have access to reliable and quicker testing at an affordable price while both the government and the medical community recognise the need to ramp up testing for the virus in Malaysia.

“We have been receiving requests from patients, doctors and our partner hospitals seeking a safe, affordable and accessible solution for Covid-19 collection. In the coming weeks, the participating laboratories will soon be able to conduct over 5,000 tests daily with 24-hour turnaround time.

“The programme will be rolled out in phases across the country with the first drive-through service starting tomorrow at Clinipath’s Headquarters in Klang,” he said.

To avoid crowding, the service will be offered by appointment only through online reservations at https://covid19.gribbles.com.my,  www.quantumdxs.comwww.clinipath.com.my or call the Central Hotline 1800-2-COVID (26843) to choose a location and time of sample collection.

Meanwhile, in another statement, another private lab Lablink (M) Sdn Bhd said due to the high infection risk of Covid-19 specimens, collection for the public would be carried out at designated areas at KPJ Hospitals or via KPJ’s drive-through collection facilities.

Its executive director, Ahmad Nasirruddin Harun, said the company has been providing testing of the appropriate specimens received from hospitals both from walk-in members of the public as well as inpatients.

“We also take in samples from various other healthcare service providers. The number of specimens we handle has witnessed a steady increase and may reach to about 1,000 per day,” he said.

Lablink Pathologist In-Charge and Consultant Medical Microbiologist Dr Muhammad Nazri Aziz said Lablink has intensified efforts in molecular testing for Covid-19 where cases being screened with reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR).

Lablink manages KPJ Healthcare’s network of 28 hospital laboratories, as well as servicing more than 100 non-KPJ hospitals (including public hospitals and clinics). – Bernama