Fiocruz has started the operation of its second Unit for Supporting the Diagnostic of Covid-19. Located on the Campus of Fiocruz Ceará, in the Eusébio Innovation District, the new facilities have the potential to process up to 10,000 molecular tests (RT-PCR) daily for the detection of the novel coronavirus. The first Supporting Unit, located on the Campus of Manguinhos, in Rio de Janeiro, started its activities on August 10th and can process up to 15,000 samples per day.
The initiative is part of the strategy to support the Central Laboratories of Public Health (Lacen) and for the expansion of the national capacity of sample processing, a fundamental action for the epidemiological surveillance of the virus and for facing the pandemic. "Fiocruz has sought to be part of the response to the humanitarian crisis that we have been experiencing since the beginning of the pandemic. Our 120-year tradition and our presence in all regions of Brazil allow us to contribute with the Ministry of Health in the national testing strategy", says the president, Nísia Trindade Lima.
The new center was opened today (8/24), with the presence of the interim Minister of Health, Eduardo Pazuello; the governor of Ceará, Camilo Santana; the representative of PAHO/WHO, Socorro Gross; and the representatives of the private sector involved in the donation of funds: the regional director of Banco Bradesco; representative of Elopar, Marcos Daniel Boll; the president of Hospital Sírio Libanês and responsible for the group of physicians who are members of the Steering Committee of the Todos pela Saúde Initiative, Paulo Chap Chap; and the vice president for Institutional Relations at HGM (United Health Group), Renato Freire Casarotti.
"It is time to congregate, affirm the highest values of science, technology and the Brazilian Public Health System", said the President Nísia Trindade Lima. Pazuello spoke about the Ministry of Health's partnership with states and municipalities, with the National Councils of Health Secretaries (Conass) and Municipal Health Departments (Conasems), with the private initiative and about the work with Fiocruz, in the supporting units and the vaccine. "Fiocruz is our partner and we were talking about how many deliveries we still need to finish for the population. It is almost an institution-State, with its 120 years of existence. It covers Brazil as a whole and is responsible for essential actions", said the minister. (Click here to watch the opening ceremony)
The civil works in Ceará were financed by EloPar and United Health Group Brazil (UHG), which donated R$ 20 million and R$ 5.3 million respectively. The Ministry of Health will finance the operation. In its full operation, about 200 professionals, including biologists and trained laboratory technicians, will take turns in three shifts to process the samples, which will be sent by the Ministry of Health. The new facilities in Ceará are spread over an area of approximately 2,300 m2 and were built in just over two months.