Home Top Stories Doctor’s self-funded test lab leads way in Somalia’s COVID fight

Doctor’s self-funded test lab leads way in Somalia’s COVID fight


Its arrival might hardly have been higher timed as a result of, simply two months later, the coronavirus epidemic reached the Horn of Africa nation.

Since then Medipark Diagnostics, which he runs with 5 different medical doctors who pooled $1 million to purchase tools, has grow to be a linchpin of the nation’s creaking, donor-supported well being infrastructure.

Hospitals within the battle-scarred metropolis that when needed to wait weeks for blood check outcomes now use the lab to check for situations together with HIV and hepatitis.

But, because the Somali authorities has acknowledged, it’s within the combat towards COVID-19 that Medipark has made its most seen mark.

“We had the supplies and our molecular pathologists were in touch with other pathologists doing COVID-19 tests in other countries,” mentioned Dini, 37, whose research took him to India and China.

Until July, Medipark was the one personal lab within the metropolis testing for the virus, however since then its technicians have educated authorities well being staff to conduct exams.

“We were needed … and we were appreciated,” he mentioned.

Medipark has organized import pipelines of reagents wanted for exams, together with the polymerase chain response (PCR) check used for COVID-19. It employs employees from Kenya, Lebanon and India to function and preserve tools imported from Europe, Asia and the United States.

Somalia has been plagued by conflict since 1991, and outbreaks of ailments akin to cholera are frequent.

More than 2 million individuals would not have sufficient meals. Many stay in crowded, unsanitary camps, creating fears COVID-19 might scythe by way of a weak inhabitants.

So far, that hasn’t occurred. The well being ministry has recorded 4,229 infections and 107 deaths within the pandemic although, with giant swathes of the nation off limits because of the combating, that’s prone to be an undercount.

Medipark lab is subsequent to Hotel Shamo, the place a 2009 bombing killed 19 people throughout a medical pupil commencement. Dini was there and the recollections are nonetheless uncooked, however he and his fellow medical doctors are proud to be again dwelling.

“I am glad to help my community and make a difference,” mentioned Ali Muse, who practised in Rwanda and South Sudan earlier than returning two years in the past to assist open the lab.

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