New TB machine to boost efficiency

The National,Friday June 10th, 2016

THE Oil Search Foundation has facilitated training for Kikori Hospital staff on the use of a machine which tests sputum to confirm whether a person has tuberculosis.
Manas Sukumara, a specialist biomedical technician at the Meddent Medical Services, calibrated the GeneXpert machine and trained hospital staff on how to operate and maintain it.
The machine will be used for diagnosing TB by detecting DNA in TB bacteria in sputum samples in less than two hours. It will also be used to detect drug-resistant TB.
Hospital administrator Larry Kaipu thanked Oil Search for assisting the District Health Services and Gulf Christian Services.
“Current statistics show that two to three cases of TB are diagnosed daily. This is a real cause for concern,” he said.
“Being able to take full advantage of the GeneXpert machine will boost our efficiency as it reduces the waiting time for results from weeks to hours in diagnosing TB and drug-resistant TB.”
“This is a vital step in helping us achieve optimal standard of care for our patients in line with the national plan in tackling TB in PNG,” he said.