Wong (second from left) with Dr Mohamad on his left and others at the new lab.

COVID-19 TESTS

SIBU: Covid-19 swab tests can now be done at Sibu Hospital following the commissioning of its new monitoring lab.

Results of the tests can be made available on the same day instead of 4-5 days previously.

The opening of the lab was made possible with donations from Ta Ann Group of Companies which donated items worth up to RM300,000.

They included a bio-safety cabinet, centrifuge, automation extraction machines, laboratory software, a freezer with temperature of between -20 to -80 degree Celcius and part of the renovation cost of the lab.

As the lab is a collaborative effort between the Health Ministry and Ta Ann, the former also contributed half the cost of the project.

At the handing over of the facilities on Tuesday, acting director of the hospital, Dr Mohmad Ng Abdullah said its existing clinical research centre (CRC) lab could do a maximum of between 300 and 400 swab tests from Covid-19 suspected patients.

“In March due to the high number of swab tests, there was a backlog of cases. So with this new monitoring lab, we will not have backlog of cases anymore as with the two facilities, we can do up to 1,000 swab tests a day, “he said.

The two facilities are to cater for samples from the central region which includes Sibu, Mukah, Sarikei, Kanowit and Betong.

“After Covid-19 pandemic is over, we will use the facilities for other purposes,” said Dr Mohamad.

Ta Ann’s group administrative manager (Insurance and Public Relations), Wong Teck Sung handed over the facilities to Dr Mohamad.