Device that can test for different strains of COVID-19 now in Jamaica | Loop Jamaica

The content originally appeared on: Jamaica News

Jamaica now has a device that can test for different strains of COVID-19.

Prime Minister Andrew Holness on Friday announced that the device a Genome Sequencer is now at the University Hospital of the West Indies.

“The long-awaited Genome Sequencer, which will test for different strains for COVID-19, was handed over to the National Influenza Centre at the University Hospital of the West Indies this morning (Friday), Holness said on his social media page.

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO Genomic sequencing has been important for the COVID-19 response.

“New variants are forming all the time, so genomic data has guided countries to make quick and informed public health decisions since the start of the pandemic,” a release from WHO has said.

Jamaica recorded 173 new COVID-19 over 24 hours up to Thursday, October 21, according to the Health and Wellness Ministry.

This is while 20 COVID-19 deaths occurred from August 23 to October 19 and were recorded on Thursday, bringing the overall coronavirus death toll in Jamaica to 2,153.

The newly confirmed COVID-19 cases brought the total number on record for the island to 87,970.

And as authorities work to keep cases down Minister of Health and Wellness, Dr Christopher Tufton in September announced that the Mu strain of the Coronavirus was in the island.