18 March 2020
The Medical Research Council Unit The Gambia at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine is the only testing centre for COVID-19 in the country.
However, our facilities are not open to walk-in requests for testing at the moment. COVID19 testing is facilitated by our partners at the Ministry of Health. All persons who may be observing COVID-19 symptoms should contact the Ministry of Health by calling the national helpline 1025 from any network, free of charge.
Working in close collaboration with the Ministry of Health, we have tested nine suspected cases and three other cases. Only one case has been positive. All other cases have been negative, and the concerned individuals have been given health advice.
The team at the Ministry of Health will respond to calls on the COVID19 helpline, and work with our team to ensure isolation and testing, in line with tried and tested guidelines.
As the pandemic develops and more countries are affected, we encourage everyone to practice the key preventive measures.
• Wash your hands often with soap and water.
• Use an alcohol-based hand sanitiser if soap and water are not available. This is particularly important after taking public transport.
• Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
• Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
• When you cough or sneeze, cover your mouth with a tissue, then throw the tissue in a bin.
• Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces in the home and work environment.
For timely, reliable and accurate information on the Coronavirus pandemic, contact the national helpline on 1025, from any network, free of charge.