Topic: Expanding the opportunities for testing the population for the new coronavirus infection.
Excerpts from transcript:
Tatyana Golikova: Today, we have decided to expand the opportunities for testing the population for the new coronavirus infection. This decision basically means that the Russian Federation’s regions should submit their proposals regarding specific regional institutions where this work can be conducted by 17 March. This concerns laboratories that work with biosafety level (BSL) 3 and 4 pathogens. This means that they cannot directly work with the virus, but they can work with lower level viruses. For expanding these opportunities, we suggest that people who lack obvious symptoms but who have visited countries with an unfavourable epidemiological situation can contact these laboratories after the regions launch this work together with Rospotrebnadzor. The latter will provide all the regions that notify of the need for expanded opportunities with medical test kits. I would like to assure everyone that we have no shortage of medical test kits. We ourselves manufacture enough of them, and we are ready to supply these test kits in line with the requests.
As for the procedure to launch this work, we will start training personnel as of17 March, after the regions submit their proposals. We will obtain the personnel’s consent to work with such material at the regional laboratories, and we will be ready to launch our work. We will sum up the first results of this work on 23 March.
Additionally, I would like to draw attention to the fact that we are already expanding with the help of Rospotrebnadzor laboratories which are now working in various territories. We planned to expand our capacities by at least 100 percent this week. And this will be accomplished. The country’s regional laboratories will also be involved in this process.
But I would also like to note that all Russian citizens don’t have to be tested for the new coronavirus infection. This mostly implies people who have been to countries affected by the new coronavirus infection, as well as those who have contacted such people. Add to this people suffering from acute respiratory syndrome. Everyone else can safely abstain from testing for the new coronavirus.
Today, three test kits are registered in the Russian Federation. Two of them have been developed at the Veсtor State Research Centre, and the Ministry of Healthcare has provided one more system. Another test kit, now at the development stage, may be registered this week. We will inform everyone about the principle of its functioning after the test kit is registered.