KEMRI’s COVID-19 testing capacity received a shot in the arm after the Japanese government donated 500 COVID-19 PCR kits to be used to carry out about 50, 000 tests.
The donations done through the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) was presented by the Japanese Ambassador to Kenya, H.E. Ryoichi HOIRE to the Institute’s Director General, Prof. Yeri Kombe and witnessed by the Chief Administrative Secretary (CAS) in the Ministry of Health (MoH), Dr. Rashid Aman
“I want to most sincerely thank the Government and the People of Japan through JICA for making this generous contribution and support towards strengthening the COVID -19 Testing at KEMRI which we have been undertaking on behalf of our Government,” said Prof. Yeri Kombe, Director General KEMRI upon receiving the donations.
He noted that the Government and People of Japan were “dependable friends of the Institute”. Indeed, KEMRI and JICA have shared a cordial relationship spanning for over 40 years since the inception of the Institute with infrastructure and human capacity development to its credit.
According to Prof. Kombe, increased testing remains key in the fight against COVID-19. So far, KEMRI has tested over 215,269 tests across the country making the Institute the largest testing site in the country
At least 25 protocols addressing various aspects of COVID-19 are already underway including whole genome sequencing of over 600 samples, the development of RT-PCR Kits and Point of care Kits. The whole mark of the envisaged vaccine candidate development and the drug efficacy and clinical trials studies under exploration.
During the colourful handover last week, the guests who also included the JICA Senior Representative, Mr. Katsutoshi KOMORI, Ministry of Health, Director General, Dr. Patrick Amoth and KEMRI Board of Management Chair, Dr. Naphtali Agata were taken for a conducted tour at selected facilities in the Institute.