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Coronavirus: Morocco ranks 2nd in Africa in screening tests

In just two weeks, Morocco has risen to second place in Africa in screening for the Covid-19 virus, advancing, step by step, two other continental powers, namely Egypt and Ghana. Indeed, with a total as of June 1, 2020 of 221554 tests (compared to just over 100000 tests on May 19, 2020 and less than 16000 tests a month earlier), our country is only ahead of the South Africa, which already has some 742742 tests to its credit for a population 1.6 times larger.

It must be said that in the past month, Morocco has made an effort as substantial as commendable to speed up the rate of tests administered to its population by recently exceeding the daily bar of 10000 PCR tests (against 20000 for the South Africa), which is the most reliable type of virological test so far worldwide and which our health authorities have chosen, since the start of the fight against the pandemic of the new coronavirus, for its screening strategy. Such a ramp-up would not have been possible had it not been for the gradual increase in the number of laboratories equipped and empowered to carry out PCR tests (fairly complicated and technical in short) from 3 at the beginning of March to almost twenty at the time of writing these columns (12 from different establishments under the Ministry of Public Health, two military hospitals, two private non-profit hospitals under foundations and three private laboratories.

Recall that in terms of population, Morocco has tested, to date, more than 6000 people per million inhabitants. Admittedly, this remains far from the best European students such as Denmark and Spain who are respectively close to 110000 and 90000 tests and even from South Africa which is double, but our country is already ahead of several other significantly richer countries and developed like Japan and Argentina.

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