The Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research has begun investigations into alleged falsification of COVID-19 test results at the Institute. This follows reports on social media alleging breaches of the COVID-19 testing protocols.
In a statement issued by the Director of the Institute, Professor Abraham Kwabena Anang, it assured that the allegation was being treated with “grave seriousness.“
“The University has decided that a press release should be put on hold and investigations conducted over the weekend and a report presented to the University for Senior Management meeting on Monday morning 18th January 2021,” it said.
The statement said aside from the Institute’s internal investigations, external investigations would be conducted by National Security, which was in discussion with the Coordinator of the National Network of COVID-19 testing Laboratories.
The Noguchi investigation team include Prof. Collins Ahorlu, Dr. Michael Ofori, Dr. Mary Coleman, Dr. Charles Quaye, and Dr. Ivy Asantewa Asante, the statement said.
The statement said the team’s task included; to confirm the validity of the displayed positive COVID-19 test, check if there is any negative COVID-19 test result for the same person and interrogate staff who were on duty for any relevant information.
The rest are; evaluate the existing COVID-19 testing system from sample taking to the release of results, identify any other COVID-19 related issues, and present report to the Director by 0800 hours.
“To facilitate this process, all Virology staff and other staff on the COVID-19 testing teams are to report to the Institute by 0830 hours on Sunday, January 17 2021.
“Meanwhile, the investigative team may call any staff to hold interactions physically or virtually at any time,” it said.