With the aim to improve healthcare services and strengthen preparedness during amid the pandemic, the Ministry of Health is working to establish additional molecular biology laboratories to perform COVID-19 PCR tests in Ulaanbaatar city’s district hospitals.
This week, three laboratories have been set up at general hospitals in Chingeltei, Songinokhairkhan and Sukhbaatar districts. With daily testing capacity of up to 1,200-1,500 tests, the newly-established laboratories now allow fast healthcare services to residents and quicker and accurate COVID-19 tests, reports the Ministry of Health. The lab centers enable district residents to get responsively tested without having to go elsewhere. Most importantly districts will now be able to conduct active surveillance with their own fully equipped laboratory centers.
Minister of Health T.Munkhsaikhan together with Head of Health Department of Ulaanbaatar L.Tumurbaatar and WHO Representative to Mongolia Sergey Diorditsa visited the hospitals to get acquainted with the hospitals’ operations.
The Health Minister stressed that the new laboratories are not only able to run COVID-19 tests, but also perform diagnosis of influenza and other viruses, tuberculosis, hepatitis B and C viruses and sexually transmitted diseases. “In addition, hospitals in Khan-Uul and Bayanzurkh Districts of the capital city will be equipped with new PCR laboratories in the near future, as well as local hospitals in rural areas, and training for employees of the laboratories are being provided.”
According to the Minister, there are 5,000 beds available in Ulaanbaatar city to accommodate COVID-19 patients, if necessary.
Commending the Government of Mongolia and Health Ministry for establishing molecular biology laboratories to further strengthen preparedness at city and district levels, WHO Representative Dr Sergey Diorditsa highlighted, “These newly established lab centers will not only be used for testing and diagnostics of COVID-19, but also for other infectious diseases. WHO is providing technical as well as financial support to strengthen the national laboratory capacity. We will continue working together to ensure smooth operation of centers at full capacity, provide other necessary equipment and train workforce. I’d like to congratulate again the Government for its commitment and for this important step towards strengthening the national lab capacity.”
Ulaanbaatar /13 January 2021/