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Cabinet Approves K10.2 million for COVID Research

Cabinet has approved K10.2 million in assisting COVID-19 research, including the development of research laboratories and the procurement of sampling of drugs.

According to Prime Minister James Marape, the funds may also be used on the drug trials - if the Health Department approves. He said that this initiative was a “genuine pursuit by some of our own young scientists and doctors”.

“Based on their research, they established a hypothesis that they can find a cure for the Covid-19,” he said. “I am not here to stop the ingenuity and brilliance of Papua New Guineans, hence, we offer our support but we will do it properly through a State-sanctioned process. All NEC documents eventually become public when associated documents to pronounce government programmes and policies are released.”

In addition, Marape said that the money will be used for research and that organizations such as the University of Papua New Guinea, the Health Department and the PNG Institute of Medical Research will all be a part of it. He added that the bulk is for the re-building of the science faculty laboratories at the University PNG and is not intended for the company Niugini Biomed by scientists and doctors.

“And if the medical and scientific community through peer review gives the okay, then the next phase of the work that will involve drug procurement and laboratory mix and trial will proceed,” he said.

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