COVID-19 Test now Costs N20,000 in Niger
Members of the public will now pay N20,000 for COVID-19 test in Niger State, the Commissioner for Health Dr. Mohammed Makunsidi has stated.
According to him, this is the cost agreed upon by the state executive council and the change begins immediately.
The commissioner said those who would pay the fee are those who need the COVID-19 test to travel abroad or for other personal purposes.
He added that people who fall into the category of contact tracing and those who were recommended by a medical officer to be tested for exhibiting signs of the virus and posing a threat to the public would be tested free.
“For those from the public, who have been recommended from the hospital or for contact tracing who are required to do the test, theirs is free of charge. Now, if you want to travel abroad, or you need it for employment or other purposes other than contact tracing and recommendation from a medical officer, you need to pay N20,000,” he said.
Speaking to reporters in Minna, Makunsidi explained that the amount, which is subsidised by the government, would help to bridge the cost of consumables, laboratory maintenance and ensure a longtime sustainability framework.
He said other federal health institutions charge N39,500 for the COVID-19 test but the state government is subsidising its rate by N19,500.
He explained that the COVID-19 expenses are becoming expensive for the government alone to shoulder the responsibility, adding that the turn out for testing was increasing every day and each testing kit costs the state government N35,000 to procure.
“The cost of maintaining the laboratories, including the power supply, machines, chemicals and reagents and other materials are too much for the government to continue offering the services at a large scale, free of charge.”