Synevo, part of Sweden’s Medicover holding, has handed over the COVID-19 diagnostic equipment using PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction) tests – the most reliable method for diagnosing this coronavirus disease, to the Public Health Center, Synevo Development Director Mykola Butenko said at a video press conference at Interfax-Ukraine on Tuesday.
The equipment made by Swiss Roche will allow increasing the speed and the number of COVID-19 tests and will significantly increase the accuracy of test results, removing human element from the process.
The analyzer’s capacities are 96 tests per hour. Different types of biomaterial (blood, saliva, cerebrospinal fluid and others) can be tested.
The equipment has already been delivered by Synevo to the virology reference laboratory of the Public Health Center in Kyiv, which will perform COVID-19 testing.
“In Ukraine, because of the high cost of equipment, this initial stage is usually tested manually by laboratory staff. This limits the speed and number of tests performed. Using the new analyzer will minimize the human factor. As a result, we will significantly increase the number of tests performed and eliminate the risk of human error,” Butenko said.
The use of new equipment will increase the safety of the laboratory staff, since the apparatus performs the process of RNA extraction from the biomaterial automatically, therefore, the laboratory staff will no longer have to contact samples of potentially infected biomaterial.
To launch the analyzer, representatives of Roche Diagnostics in Ukraine will be involved in the startup of the equipment, as well as in special training for employees of the Public Health Center’s laboratory how to use the equipment.
The PCR method directly detects DNA or virus RNA in the biomaterial, therefore this method is the most reliable in the world for the diagnosis of COVID-19.
Biopharma, which is one of the ten largest Ukrainian manufacturers of the pharmaceutical industry and specializes in human blood plasma drugs, has submitted to the laboratories of the Public Health Center of the Ministry of Health of Ukraine equipment that will allow the presence and absence of samples to be determined quickly and by modern methods agents of coronavirus disease. This decision, in conjunction with entrepreneur Vasyl Khmelnytsky’s UFuture holding company, is a continuation of a series of social initiatives undertaken by Ukrainian entrepreneurs amid a coronavirus pandemic.
“The Center will become the main reference site that will monitor the correctness of diagnostics throughout Ukraine. In other words, samples from laboratories will be sent here to confirm or refute the diagnosis. Without the transferred equipment, effective control of coronavirus disease in Ukraine would be defective,” Kostiantyn Yefymenko, President of Biopharma, reported.
The first unit is the Nuclear Acid Extraction Equipment from Thermo Fisher Scitific with consumables for 20,000 samples. The equipment helps prepare samples for analysis. The second unit is the equipment of Bio-Rad CFX 96 for molecular genetic analysis by PCR for the presence of a DNA virus and a system test for the detection of COVID-19.
The total cost of the equipment exceeds six million UAH, its installation and startup is performed by the company “ALT Ukraine LTD”. The equipment allows to process up to 100 samples in 60 minutes and in total about 2 thousand analyzes per day.
“Business should do everything in its power to stop the spread of the coronavirus and bring Ukraine back to normal. First of all, we need quality and timely diagnostics. already hundreds of millions of hryvnias and assistance continues,” Vasyl Khmelnytsky, founder of UFuture, said.
In addition, UFuture purchased two lung ventilation devices and all materials for their operation for the amount of 1 million 700 thousand UAH to one of the hospitals in Kyiv, and Biopharma — equipment for Bila Tserkva city hospital №3 (reference infectious hospital for the Kyiv region) with an amount of five million UAH.
• two AR-203 artificial ventilation apparatus;
• AS-200 biochemical automatic analyzer;
• 3-Part DiffH 18 light hematology analyzer;
• EasyStat blood gas and electrolyte analyzer;
• BM1600 patient monitor with BM200 module;
• Laura Smart urine analyzer;
• two microscopes Micromed Fusion FS-7620.
The total cost of assistance from the holding companies is more than 12 million UAH. Also, masks and systems for rapid tests for the hospitals of Bila Tserkva will be purchased soon.
UFuture is a holding company of Ukrainian entrepreneur Vasyl Khmelnytsky that integrates his business and impact-investment projects. The company has a diversified portfolio of assets in the fields of real estate, infrastructure, industry, renewable energy, pharmaceuticals, and IT. Currently, UFuture’s assets are estimated at $550 million, and the total capitalization of the businesses it invested in is more than $1 billion.
Biopharma is a Ukrainian immunobiological pharmaceutical company that which specializes in the drugs of human blood plasma. The number of employees – more than 300 people. The company exports drugs to 36 countries. In 2019, the company opened in Bila Tserkva a “built from scratch” manufacturing facility, investing about $75 million. Its the only plant of its kind in Eastern Europe.
The European Investment Bank (EIB) is ready to redirect funds issued for programs in Ukraine for fight against coronavirus, Foreign Minister of Ukraine Dmytro Kuleba has said.
“I spoke with the European Investment Bank, which is ready to redirect certain funds allocated for programs in Ukraine to measures to overcome the coronavirus,” he said in an interview with Interfax-Ukraine.
In addition, Kuleba said that at a meeting with the head of the mission of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in Ukraine, Florence Gillette, he discussed the question of what kind of help the ICRC can provide to Ukraine in preventing the spread of coronavirus.
“We are ready to receive something as humanitarian aid, to purchase something, but this search is being conducted at all levels, in international organizations, in business contacts,” the minister said.
According to him, the entire system of the Foreign Ministry of Ukraine is now working on two fundamental tasks: the return of Ukrainians from other countries and the search for humanitarian assistance and procurement.
Myronivsky Hliboproduct (MHP) will allocate about UAH 14 million to purchase high-priority equipment for hospitals and personal protective equipment in Cherkasy region.
MHP said on Facebook that on March 19 representatives of Cherkasy Regional State Administration and the agricultural holding developed an operational plan to counter the spread of coronavirus.
“To date, a commission has been created, a headquarters will be created in the coming days,” the company noted.
According to MHP, the priority task for today is the purchase of needed equipment for hospitals and personal protective means. In addition, the company will support the purchase of all necessary devices by involving its specialists from the logistics department.
“The local authorities and MHP are urging other businesses, whose facilities are located in Cherkasy region, to actively participate in reducing the risks of the spread of coronavirus,” MHP said.
MHP is the largest producer of poultry in Ukraine. It is also engaged in production of grains, sunflower oil, meat.
The draft law “On priority decisions related to the prevention, prophylaxis and elimination of the COVID-19 coronavirus, other infectious diseases associated with it, as well as crisis response measures to prevent the spread of the epidemic” provides a clear algorithm for forced isolation and self-isolation, as well as liability for non-compliance with quarantine.
Minister of Health of Ukraine Illia Yemets presented the bill on Friday to MPs and representatives of relevant departments at a meeting of the working group under the Verkhovna Rada Committee on National Health, Medical Assistance and Medical Insurance to draft legislative proposals aimed at preventing the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus in Ukraine.
The bill also provides for the simplification of the procurement of goods, works and services to prevent and combat coronavirus, which will speed up the process of purchasing personal protective equipment and test systems; the ability to work remotely; a ban on holding mass events with more than 200 people; a ban on conducting state surveillance and control measures during the implementation of measures related to the prevention and control of coronavirus; strengthening control of entry and exit to the territory of Ukraine.
According to the press service of the Ministry of Health, deputies supported the initiative and made several amendments to it.