The Ministry of Health was the first to place an order for 100,000 tests.
Rabat – The Rabat-based Moroccan Foundation for Advanced Science, Innovation, and Research (MAScIR) has launched large-scale production of its 100% Moroccan-made COVID-19 PCR test kits.
The Ministry of Health has ordered 100,000 units, a press release from MAScIR announced on Thursday.
The launch comes four months after the foundation received national and international validations for its Sars-CoV2 diagnostic kit.
After obtaining the validations, the foundation faced the challenge of launching an industrial production unit urgently.
MAScIR set a goal of producing 10,000 kits before the end of June as a means of testing its production capacity. After reaching the goal on June 30, the foundation distributed the kits to public authorities and tasked its start-up subsidiary Moldiag with the large-scale production.
“Moldiag has accelerated its equipment in materials and instrumentation necessary for large-scale production,” according to the press release.
The startup can produce and market the Moroccan COVID-19 test kits under the product registration certificate that the Ministry of Health issued on July 21.
MAScIR said the startup’s production capacity is 1 million tests per month.
The statement added that Moldiag benefited from the “precious confidence of the Ministry of Health,” evidenced in the ministry placing the first order of of 100,000 tests.
Discussions are underway with potential local distributors to make the Moroccan-made COVID-19 test kits available at the national market.
“The national innovation will make it possible to provide Moroccan laboratories with a diagnostic kit at a competitive price, which will increase the screening capacity since the upsurge in coronavirus cases in Morocco,” the press release underlined.
MAScIR’s role in Morocco’s COVID-19 efforts
MAScIR explained that the 100% Moroccan COVID-19 test underwent a series of validation processes in biological and virological centers at the national and international levels.
The validation made it possible to certify the effectiveness of the test, the press release added.
The statement said that the test received the validation of national and foreign-approved laboratories, including Morocco’s Royal Armed Forces and the Royal Gendarmerie, as well as the Pasteur Institute of Paris.
“Our medical biotechnology center has been hosting research for ten years around two phases, namely the development of molecular diagnostic kits for certain infectious and cancerous diseases in Morocco and Africa and the development of a dedicated platform biosimilar medicines,” Nawal Chraibi, the director-general of the MAScIR Foundation explained.
She said MAScIR’s decade of experience helped the foundation rapidly design and produce the COVID-19 screening kits.
The Moroccan-made test kits will help the country achieve mass screening tests to fight the spread of COVID-19.
The country has recorded 65,453 COVID-19 cases, 1,216 related deaths, and 50,357 recoveries to date. Hospitalized cases total 13,880.
Morocco has conducted more than 1.8 million tests for COVID-19 as of September 2.