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Jamaica now able to test for coronavirus strains with new device

Prime Minister Andrew Holness
 
Jamaica now has a genome sequencing machine that will facilitate testing for coronavirus variants.
 
The machine, which was acquired for the National Influenza Centre at the University Hospital of the West Indies, was handed over during a ceremony on Friday morning.
 
Some $40 million was provided by the CHASE Fund to purchase the machine. 
 
Currently, samples taken in Jamaica are sent to the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) in Trinidad and Tobago.
 
Prime Minister Andrew Holness, who attended the handing over ceremony, said although it took a while for the genome sequencer to arrive in Jamaica, procurement rules had to be followed. 
 
He said the lengthy delay highlights the need to make bureaucratic processes more efficient. 
 
"Our state of development as a country, the state of the evolution of our public administration, is that we are putting in place the mechanisms to manage but we are not yet as a country and as a society efficient in the management of those mechanisms, and it will take some time and it is something that you have to manage very carefully," he asserted.  
 
 
 


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