The MRC/UVRI and LSHTM Uganda Research Unit has received £2.7 million from the MRC/UKRI to support Uganda’s COVID-19 national response plan through diagnostic testing, sequencing, clinical support and community-based surveillance.
Current testing has confirmed that while importation of the virus into Uganda remains a high risk, the risk of COVID-19 spread in the community, notably in the face of eased national lockdown measures is also significant.
The funding will support testing and virus sequencing of appropriate populations through diagnostic test support for more than 100,000 tests in collaboration with the Uganda Virus Research Institute (UVRI), which hosts Uganda’s COVID-19 reference laboratories.
Initial COVID-19 specific funding received from the MRC/UKRI through the MRC/UVRI and LSHTM Uganda Research Unit supported the procurement of diagnostic reagents for 10,000 tests, as well as expertise and trained personnel to deliver the results at UVRI.
The funding also supported researchers at MRC/UVRI and LSHTM Uganda Research Unit, UVRI and Ministry of Health and their partners to generate Uganda’s first SARS-CoV-2 full genomes through rapid local sequencing.