Israel’s leading coronavirus testing company, AID Genomics, has signed a deal to set up a system of laboratories for detecting and genetic sequencing of the coronavirus in Africa.
Africa is home to some 1.3 billion people and has the lowest levels of immunization in the world, with only six countries on the continent having vaccinated more than 40% of their population. Some have under 1% vaccination.
There have been at least 9,472,000 reported infections and 227,000 reported deaths caused by coronavirus in Africa so far, according to the Reuters COVID-19 tracker.
AID Genomics was founded in 2018, less than two years before the start of the COVID pandemic. The company’s mission is to develop precision medicine-based diagnostics, primarily for oncology but also for hereditary rare diseases and infectious diseases. With the start of the crisis, it began devoting major resources toward the global fight.
In 2020, AID Genomics was contracted by the government to revamp six laboratories and validate their reverse transcription PCR lab protocols and provide COVID-19 PCR testing. It also set up an automated lab in Jerusalem capable of running 70,000 COVID-19 PCR tests per day. In the past year, the lab has processed 5 million COVID PCR tests. At this point, it is considered the largest coronavirus lab in the Middle East region.