Thursday, June 20, 2024

Uganda: Govt Decision to Restrict DNA Tests to Two Labs Raises Questions

There is confusion among the general public following the government’s decision to restrict the paternity DNA testing to only two laboratories in the whole country.

Government ruled that only two laboratories in the country are authorised to carry out paternity DNA testing in the country after meeting the needed qualifications for one to run such a complex test.

According to Dr. Jane Ruth Aceng, the minister for health, paternity DNA testing is a complex procedure that requires sophisticated technology, a highly skilled human resource and infrastructure for proper accuracy.

Among the two accredited laboratories is the government analytical laboratory in Wandegeya that has been doing the exercise for twenty years and MBN laboratories along Nakasero road.

A visit to MBN laboratory, reveals that it was officially opened in 2012 by the then minister for Health, Dr. Christine Ondoa and has been carrying out the exercise for over ten years.

This lab is one of the few accredited labs on the African continent by AABB standing for Association for the Advancement of Blood & Bio-therapies, an international, not-for-profit organisation representing individuals and institutions involved in the field of transfusion medicine and biotherapies.

Government notes that the equipment, technologies and reagents being used in the two certified laboratories are validated and found to be of sound standard for the certification.

Currently the government is in the development stage of developing guidelines to streamline DNA paternity testing to ensure equality, legal, ethical and professional practices.


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