Covid-19 testing is set to ramp up considerably in Mexico City, the country’s coronavirus epicenter.
The city government has signed collaboration agreements with the national institutes of Medical Science and Nutrition, Respiratory Diseases and Genomic Medicine that will allow a total of 3,500 tests to be performed and processed every day.
As a result of the agreements, waiting times for test results will be reduced from seven days to just three.
Eduardo Clark, a director at the government’s Digital Agency for Public Innovation, told the newspaper El Universal that at the start of the coronavirus pandemic, the Mexico City Health Ministry was performing between 800 and 1,000 tests per day.
However, testing rates declined to about 650 people per day at the beginning of April, he said.
Under the new agreements, the government will pay for the testing kits while the national health institutes will pay the costs of carrying them out, Clark said.
The Institute of Epidemiological Diagnosis and Reference and a Mexico City government-run laboratory will also continue to perform and process coronavirus tests, he said.
The city has recorded more than 60,000 confirmed coronavirus cases since the start of the pandemic but low testing rates mean the real number of people who have been infected is almost certainly much higher.
The capital has also recorded more than 8,000 Covid-19 fatalities, according to official data.
“Orange light” high risk coronavirus restrictions currently apply in Mexico City but authorities have designated 34 areas of the capital as “red light” zones due to their high number of cases.
Source: El Universal (sp)