23 April 2020 – Development of own tests for detection of COVID-19

Type of Intervention: New Tool / Service / Body
Sectors Involved: Health, Research and Development
Intervention Categories: Surveillance and response measures; Detecting and isolating cases
Level of Jurisdiction: National
Lead People/Agency: Scientific Researchers and Ministry of Science

Overview: Costa Rica will develop its own tests for the detection of COVID-19. The study seeks to adapt protocols to replace parts or stages of commercial kits currently used in official laboratories, by others that fulfill the same function. This will allow having tests prepared in the country. The director of the National Center for Biotechnological Innovations (CENIBiot) expressed that, in general terms, detection of the virus by means of RT-PCR consists of three steps: the extraction of viral genetic material, reverse transcription, and detection. A team and a large logistical support network have been formed that will speed up the prototyping and testing process to put the results to the service of the competent authorities as soon as possible. The study is being carried out by CENIBiot, from the National Center for High Technology (CENAT) in coordination with the Ministry of Science, the Ministry of Health, the Costa Rican Institute for Research and Teaching in Nutrition and Health (INCIENSA), the Technological Institute of Costa Rica (TEC), the University of Costa Rica (UCR) and other actors such as the Chamber of Industries of Costa Rica (ICRC) with the support of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP).
Full details here: https://www.ministeriodesalud.go.cr/index.php/centro-de-prensa/noticias/741-noticias-2020/1627-costa-rica-desarrollara-sus-propias-pruebas-para-deteccion-de-covid-19

Type of Justification: Advice of INTERNAL government advisory committee or group, Advice of EXTERNAL expert advisor or advisory committee, Advice of EXTERNAL group of non-academics (e.g. business or community leaders)
Source of Evidence or Justification: National – academic, National – government, International – other