More coronavirus testing needed

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BARELY six days before the current lockdown comes to an end, the country is still very far from meeting its own coronavirus test target of 40 000 people by end of this month.

So far the country has tested nearly 7 000 people for the lethal pandemic — a measly figure given what the nation set as the target.

Out of the tested cases, 31 were positive, including four deaths.

It is paramount that we test more people for the lethal disease for the government to know the extent and expanse of the spread of coronavirus in the country.

This would allow the government to come up with appropriate measures to contain the scourge.

It would also give an indication to the powers that be on whether or not to end the lockdown and if it is to be extended, by how many days, weeks or months.

The major drawback in increased testing, according to the government, had been lack of testing kits, but that seems to be a thing of the past.

Over the past week, the country has witnessed how public-private partnerships can work to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus pandemic. Several local companies have come to the party to assist government to fight the spread of the pandemic that has killed tens of thousands of people, infected over two million and wreaked economies globally.

We have seen corporates donating thousands of testing kits, ventilators, masks and protective clothing, among other essentials which were in short supply in this fight between life and death given that cure or a vaccine is yet to be found to eradicate the killer virus.

It is against this background of public-private partnership that we urge the government to speed up coronavirus tests across the country.

It is out of more tests that as a nation we can truly appreciate the extent and expanse of the spread of the disease.

With an appreciation of how wide-spread the disease is, the government would be able to map out appropriate interventions and can appeal for assistance locally and abroad based on copper-bottomed facts.

It is prudent that the government should seriously consider door-to-door testing, hence the need to continue sourcing for more test kits and, as already demonstrated by the corporate world, it is possible to marshal resources.

Public-private partnership is working. Let’s continue on the trajectory in the fight against the scourge!

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