ZANZIBAR: THE US Ambassador to Tanzania, Mr Michael Battle has hailed the Public Health Laboratory Ivo de Carneri (PHL-IdC) that is located at Wawi area in South Pemba, for a good performance and progress in diseases research.
The progress is linked to financial and technical support from the United States (US) through its American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARP), and the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Management and Development for Health (MDH).
Mr Battle said this when he led a delegation to visit the Lab in Pemba recently, where he stated that its establishment in Zanzibar has helped to improve research on diseases and tests for Covid-19.
He pointed out that the presence of the Laboratory in Zanzibar reduces waiting time for tests, strengthens the control and methods of dealing with diseases in the population of more than 1.8 people of Zanzibar and more than 390,000 tourists, on average, who visit the islands annually.
“Tourists who visit the islands every year would like to find better health services including medical laboratories. It is good that the PHL has been doing well in research and giving results that help to find solutions to deal with these diseases,” the Ambassador explained.
He commended the Zanzibar government and other development partners for ensuring that the Lab uses modern technology and has a team of experts, helping to improve health and save the lives of the residents of Pemba and other areas of the Islands.
During the visit it was revealed that the MDH has supported the purchase of modern lab machines, reagents and medical equipment as well as providing professional guidance and training to Laboratory staff and specialists.
MDH under ARPA through CDC has been supporting the maintenance services for Lab equipment which are important in making research on different pandemics such as Ebola, COVID19, and yellow fever among others.
On his part, Zanzibar Deputy Minister for Health, Mr Hassan Khamis Hafidh said historical relations with the US are cemented through continued support from the American people, “We are happy with your visit to the Lab facility in Pemba to inspect the progress.”
Mr Hafidh said the Zanzibar Health Ministry has also intensified its campaign against maternal and Infant mortality by improving outreach programs.
“We make follow ups in homes to check pregnant mothers and encourage them to visit clinics to prevent deaths,” he stated.
He added: “The establishment of this Laboratory in Zanzibar has improved services and various researches, and the lab has become one of important centres in the region for provision of training on research among health professionals from different countries in the world.”
On his part, Dr David Sando, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the MDH said they have been supporting both Union and Zanzibar governments, mainly the area of laboratory and medical equipment for different tests including DNA.
The PHL director, Dr Said Mohamed Ali, thanked the government and the US for establishing and equipping the Lab used for testing and research of outbreak diseases and infectious disease, and also develop innovative solutions to control diseases.