COVID-19 is wrecking havoc on communities worldwide and is a particular concern for cancer patients. Efforts to mitigate transmission have resulted in a reduction in clinical services, including outpatient visits and routine cancer screenings. In order for these crucial medical services to resume, increased availability of COVID testing for cancer patients and others with chronic conditions is paramount. We can respond to this need with a self-sampled, low-cost, and effective diagnostic test.
There are millions of COVID-19 cases reported with staggering death rates worldwide. The pandemic has compelled a global shutdown of many services. Efforts to mitigate transmission have resulted in a reduction in clinical services, including outpatient visits and routine cancer screenings. In order for these crucial medical services to resume, increased availability of covid testing for cancer patients and others with chronic conditions is paramount. Given vaccine shortages, testing is key.
BHI's research team can leverage its expertise and our existing collaborations with industry partners to validate and implement inexpensive, point-of-care technology for COVID-19 testing. Our projects are conducted in low resource settings such as El Salvador, Paraguay, Nigeria, and Malawi will provide insight into sample technique and sensitivity of testing while laboratory infrastructures will be expanded. Patients/public will actively benefit by gaining rapid knowledge of COVID-19 status.
Immediate impact will be to move on to widespread population testing, making it safer to resume cancer care and screening. Lab infrastructures created during this project will have long term impact during COVID-19 and after when they can be used for HPV screening and other diseases. The long term impact is improving public health in areas that have historically not had the resources to do so. BHI's work provides in country training to health workers making this work sustainable long term.
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