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UNICEF purchased 10 000 rapid tests to help Kyrgyzstan fight the COVID-19 pandemic

Today, on December 15th, 2020, 10 000 rapid antigen diagnostic tests, valued at USD 59,700, were delivered to the Ministry of Health of the KR with the support of UNICEF and the World Bank. These tests will be used by the Ministry of Health to support the current efforts on responding to the pandemic.

The delivery ceremony took place with the participation of Abdykadyr Joroev, Director of the Department of Disease Prevention and State Sanitary and Epidemiological Surveillance under the MoH KR, and Yulia Oleynik, Deputy UNICEF Representative in Kyrgyzstan.

Rapid diagnostic tests for COVID-19 antigen detection were procured by UNICEF through its global supplies and procurement hub in Copenhagen, where the largest humanitarian relief warehouse in the world is located. Logistical and transportation costs were covered by the World Bank.

According to the WHO interim recommendations, when these rapid diagnostic tests for antigen detection are used correctly, they serve as an acceptable alternative diagnostic approach to the preferred method of COVID-19 diagnostics – PCR tests.

In the case of widespread dissemination of the disease among the population, rapid diagnostic tests can be used for early detection and isolation of positive cases in medical facilities, COVID-19 testing centers, nursing homes, prisons, schools, on the frontlines of the fight against the infection and among medical workers as well as for contact tracing.

On December 14th, medical staff working on the frontlines in the fight against the coronavirus infection, healthcare coordinators, workers of national laboratory services, the Ministry of Health, and the Médecins Sans Frontiers organization underwent training on using rapid diagnostic tests.

UNICEF will continue to assist the Government of the KR in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic by providing essential supplies for frontline workers and supporting social and economic measures.