Anambra State Government Opens New Genexpert Machine And Laboratory For Treatment Of Tuberculosis In Ogbaru
Anambra State Government through her Tuberculosis, Leprosy, and Bruli Ulcer, TBLS, Control Programme has opened one of its stand alone Genexpert machine and laboratory at ONC Healthcare, Medical Diagnositic Centre and Pharmaceuticals, Iyiowa-Odekpe, Ogbaru Local Government Area for the treatment of tuberculosis.
The opening of the laboratory is facilitated by the National TBLS public-private mix model developed to ensure more effective treatment of tuberculosis in the country.
The Genexpert machine is an automated, cartridge-based nucleic acid amplification test (NAAT) for simultaneous rapid tuberculosis diagnosis and rapid antibiotic sensitivity test that can identify Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MTB) DNA and resistance to rifampicin (RIF).
It is one of the fastest, most modern and efficient technologies in the accurate identification of tuberculosis in the system.
The laboratory is solar powered to ensure 24-hour electricity.
The State Programme Manager of TBLS Control Programme, Dr Ugochukwu Chukwudebelu explained that with the opening of the Genexpert laboratory there are now thirteen of such laboratories in Anambra State.
Dr Chukwudebelu, represented by the State Quality Assurance Officer of TBLS Control Programme, Mr Ignatius Ejiofor, said the efforts made by the Anambra State Government to end tuberculosis necessitated approval of four more Genexpert laboratories by the Federal Government for the state being the only state in South East Nigeria to achieve the feat while charging the resident laboratory to ensure that they meet the monthly target to retain the citing of the Lab.
Explaining the impact the opening of the laboratory will have in the treatment and reduction of Tuberculosis, the Chief Executive Officer of ONC Healthcare, Mrs Ngozi Ezeosim said this will increase access to, and faster testing of tuberculosis in the state, help to increase awareness about the disease and help people to seek for professional medical help once they discover a symptom of the disease.
In an interview with journalists, a consultant with German Leprosy and Tuberculosis Relief Association and TBLS Supervisor for Ogbaru Local Government Area, Mrs Amaka Onyim-Esmai said with the laboratory now opened in a densely populated area like Ogbaru, they will no longer travel to Onitsha or Nnewi just to conduct tests as this will also help in fast testing as results will come out in less than two hours.
The formal inauguration of the Genexpert machine, description of their usage and management and free medical tests for participants at the ceremony were the major highpoints of the event.