New opportunities for local medical device companies amid coronavirus pandemic

Written By: Nicholas Kigondu/ Mengistu Alemayehu

A Kilifi based drug manufacturer has dispatched a consignment of 800,000 pieces of vaccine syringes worth 4 million shillings to Lagos, Nigeria.

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Revital Healthcare (EPZ) Limited, with a capacity to produce four million immunization syringes a month, said Nigeria has become the first country to receive its auto-disable syringes as well as a range of other medical products.

The syringes will be used for Sputnik V, the first officially registered Covid-19 vaccine, which Nigeria received from Russia.

The shipment left the Moi International Airport in Mombasa aboard an Ethiopian Airlines flight.

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Speaking at the Moi International Airport freight terminal, Revital Healthcare sales director Roneek Vora said they are now receiving enquiries from outside Africa.

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“In the 12 years that we have been in production, we have not received enquiries from outside Africa,” said Vora.

The manufacturer has offered to equip all the 47 counties with Covid-19 test kits, which can test at least 1,000 samples a day.

This potentially accumulates to 47,000 people tested for Covid-19 a day.

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“The machines will be provided for free provided that 25,000 kits are purchased for VTM (Viral Transport Medium) for extraction and transportation,” said Vora.

Before the Covid-19 pandemic, the manufacturer has been exporting products to 14 African countries, including six government agencies.

These include Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, Uganda, Madagascar, Mozambique, and Malawi.

However, the pandemic has seen countries like Canada, the US, Myanmar, Vietnam, Philippines, Brazil, among other countries outside Africa make enquiries and orders.

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“For the first time, we have exported face masks to the UK,” said Vora.

A state-of-the-art medical facility located in Kilifi county, Revital Healthcare manufactures all the 14 medical disposable products including immunization syringes, auto-disable syringes, Covid-19 testing kits, PPE kits, and surgical face masks, among others.

It is the only manufacturer in Africa approved by the World Health Organization (WHO) to manufacture and sell PQS-certified syringes including fixed dose immunization syringes 0.5ml, 2ml, 3ml and various other sizes.



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