The United Kingdom has halted its proposed mass testing for coronavirus after discovering that some of the kits being imported into the country were contaminated with COVID-19.
According to Telegraph UK, laboratories across the country were on Monday asked to shelve the earlier fixed tests after traces of the virus were seen in the testing kits ordered from overseas.
The development comes days after the British government had engaged the services of private firms to facilitate mass production of kits to improve testing capacity for the virus.
This, the government had explained, would help surpass its current capacity of 11,000 tests per day to 25,000 daily by mid-April.
The government, had however, suspended the mass testing after key components ordered from Eurofins, a company based in Luxembourg, had been contaminated with coronavirus.
A spokesman for Eurofins said such contamination was likely during mass production but can be resolved “by proper cleaning and production segregation procedures.”
“In rare occasions, delays in some orders may occur if based on Eurofins Genomics stringent quality and environmental control procedures, manufacturing of a product may not meet the quality or purity criteria set by Eurofins Genomics,” the spokesperson was quoted as saying.
“We are aware that contaminations of the nature you mentioned have been observed by several primers and probes manufacturers around the world after they produced SARS-COV2 positive controls.
“Those initial problems can be easily resolved by proper cleaning and production segregation procedures.”
As of April 1, the deadly disease has spread across 203 countries, infected close to 900,000 people worldwide, with 44,169 deaths recorded so far.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) had called on countries to “test, test, test” as a key part of its strategy to tackle the virus.
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