He says many camouflage as private hospital workers when they take samples to the Entebbe based lab. Cautioning the public to be ware, Kaleebu says they have established that apart from going to people’s homes to pick samples, the fraudsters are also plying hospital wards.
In his Toyota Vitz branded with mobile COVID-19 testing
services that he offers, Semu Nsibirwa plies different routes in Kampala daily
seeking clients who he promises to give testing services at the comfort of
their homes or offices.
In a phone conversation with a possible client on Thursday,
Semu asks whether she is taking the test for travel or routine check and adds
that he offers a PCR test the gold standard in COVID-19 testing at Shs200, 000 and
the antigen test at Shs100, 000. He also does, antibody tests he adds the
prices are negotiable.
//Cue in: “We do a routine ……….
Cue out: ………. They are leaving.”//
He promises that the results are delivered in 15minutes and in
eight hours depending on the test one can afford. He says they are working
directly with Uganda Virus Research Institute (UVRI) and explains why he offers
a better deal than any of the other private testing centers in town.
///Cue in: " When you go .........
Cue out: .......... is transparent". //
He can even give discounts on tests.
///Cue in: " I can give you .......
Cue out: ........... five hundred thousand."//
Unfortunately, Semu is just a fraudster. UVRI’s Executive
Director Prof. Pontiano Kaleebu says they have been recently fighting a lot of
such fraudsters. He says the research institute has been a target by many
because of the fact that when samples are taken they are tested at a free cost.
//Cue in: “We are not ……….
Cue out: ………… fraud going on.”//
He says many camouflage as private hospital workers when
they take samples to the Entebbe based lab. Cautioning the public to be ware, Kaleebu says they have
established that apart from going to people’s homes to pick samples, the
fraudsters are also plying hospital wards.
The Ministry of Health has so far accredited 21 laboratories
for testing which are all foreseen by UVRI as the reference lab. Among the
private laboratories are ATCG laboratories, Lancet, TestXpress, Mild May, MSF-
Epicenter laboratory in Mbarara, Case Clinic, ANCA Biotech, IOM laboratory,
Test and Fly, Medipal and MBN laboratories.
Emma Ainebyoona, the ministry’s Public Relations Officer tells
URN that they haven’t accredited any mobile testing providers, although he adds
that accredited testing labs can have mobile vans picking or delivering samples.
If a mobile provider doesn’t identify themselves clearly as
staff of the accredited centers, it’s highly likely that they are fraudsters
and will face the law once identified.