The Uganda Virus Research Institute has received a new state-of-the-art laboratory for research, detection, and capacity building into animal viruses.
The laboratory in Entebbe was officially commissioned on Tuesday and handed over by the United States Ambassador to Uganda, Ambassador Natali E Brown.
Ambassador Brown commended the long-standing partnership with Uganda in the field of research for human health, which she said dated way back to 1936. She promised the US government and people would continue with the support.
Brown explained that many emerging and reemerging pathogens are endemic in Uganda and it was important to understand existing knowledge and the unknown about them.
The Director of Clinical Services in the Ministry of Health Dr. Charles Olaro said Uganda had not only suffered from the current spate of Ebola ravaging some central and western districts but had also suffered from other hemorrhagic fevers, making it key to have research into these adverse occurrences.
He said Uganda was privileged to be part of this scientific research partnership, coming at a time when the whole world has just been traumatized by the Covid-19 pandemic.
The UVRI Director Dr. Pontiano Kaleebu commended funding agencies some of which are to work in collaboration with UVRI on the project. Among these are the US Centers for Disease Control, the Division of Intermural Research, and the National Institutes of Health among others. He explained the ever-emerging new diseases were a threat to human existence, thus the need for research into the problem.
UVRI will partner with Makerere University, the US National Institutes for Health, Ministry of Health among others, to execute the research.