NIMR inaugurates medical lab
Medical laboratory services in the country has received a boost as the Centre for Human Virology and Genomics of the Nigerian Institute of Medical Research (NIMR) Yaba, Lagos, gets International Organisation, ISO 15189:2012 standards, making it first public health laboratory in Nigeria to attain such status. The centre with unique accreditation number M0588 has also been listed as a South African National Accreditation System (SANAS) Accredited Medical Testing Laboratory.
Announcing this at a press conference in Lagos, the Director General of NIMR, Prof Babatunde Lawal Salako explained that the scope of the accreditation covers molecular diagnostics, serology and clinical chemistry. He said: “laboratory accreditation is highly regarded both nationally and internationally as a reliable indicator of technical competence and results generated from such laboratories are comparable with those produced by any accredited laboratory in the world.
“With this system of international recognition, data from accredited laboratories are readily accepted overseas.” Salako said with the latest addition, the centre is now prepared to collaborate with relevant institutions to conduct research and promote national health and development.
“We have expertise in the area of Human Immuno-deficiency Virus (HIV), Hepatitis B and C and we hope to include research on poliomyelitis, Lassa fever and other arboviruses very soon.” He called on the Federal Ministry of Health (FMoH) to recognise and designate the accredited research laboratory as the centre for HIV drug resistant testing in Nigeria to conduct HIV drug resistance surveillance as the only laboratory that has such capacity presently.
On her part, elated Head of the Department, NIMR, Dr. Rosemary Audu, who noted that the centre had been on the journey for over seven years, regretted that despite the importance of accreditation it is not uncommon in Nigeria.
According to her, “none of the nation’s 5,349 medical laboratories had been able to attain such international accreditation.”
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