The Costa Rican Social Security Fund (CCSS) now has five more hospital centers that will carry out diagnostic tests for COVID-19, announced the executive president, Dr. Román Macaya Hayes.
As part of the institutional strategy to expand the capacity to carry out the test, reagents were distributed to four regional hospitals: San Carlos, Monsignor Sanabria, Max Peralta, San Vicente de Paul and the Rafael Ángel Calderón Guardia National Hospital.
Macaya Hayes reported that these centers are in addition to the Mexico, Children and San Juan de Dios hospitals that have already been carrying out these tests.
He explained that this week closed PCR-RT reagents (real-time polymerase chain reaction) were delivered to process 600 samples and that it is an automated process that allows the result to be obtained in 45 minutes.
He also noted that the Institution recently enabled a high-volume closed RT-PCR equipment at the San Juan de Dios hospital, which can process 1,344 tests per day, for which there are 5,000 reagents.
The executive president added that in the coming weeks, the gradual delivery of more equipment and reagents will continue. For her part, Dr. Angie Cervantes, microbiologist, explained that the closed PCR-RT reagents have the same sensitivity as the open PCR-RT tests that the institution also performs, with the only difference that in these second the process lasts 5 hours to obtain the result.
The CCSS has managed in total the purchase of 140,000 PCR-RT tests, in addition to the 36,000 donated tests.
As indicated by Dr. Angie Cervantes, the CCSS is complying with the execution of the established institutional strategy. “We started with the use of open-PCR methodology, we are already regionalizing closed-PCR with more automated machines, we have high-volume processing equipment at HSJD, and the regional laboratory capacity is gradually being strengthened with more equipment and reagents “
Photo caption and videos: Molecular Biology officials of the San Juan de Dios Hospital, with the high-volume RT-PCR team Cobas 6800.