A file photo of a healthcare worker holding a COVID-19 test kit. TARSO SARRAF / AFP
The Lagos State Government has announced the reduction in the cost of the COVID-19 PCR test at its accredited private laboratories.
The cost which was originally N50,400 will now be going for N45,250 commencing on the 28th of January 2022.
Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi, made the announcement on Wednesday at his office in Alausa, Ikeja.
He stated that the COVID-19 PCR test cost was reviewed by Lagos State COVID-19 Incident Command Structure and approved by Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu.
Abayomi said the reduction in cost was to cut the expenses incurred by citizens who need the PCR tests for travel, work, or other purposes other than COVID symptoms or contact tracing.
He said: “In line with the directive of Mr. Governor, the Lagos State Biobank has reviewed the processes involved in conducting a COVID-19 PCR test at the accredited private laboratories consortium and based on this, made a recommendation to the Governor for a reduction.”
“For those that need to travel and require a private PCR test, the Lagos State Government has recommended a reduction in the cost of COVID-19 PCR test at the accredited private laboratories consortium from N50,400 to N45,250 per PCR test commencing on the 28th of January 2022.”
“You will recall that N50,400 initial PCR test fee charged at the private laboratories was a fixed amount approved by the Governor during the expansion of our testing to include the private laboratories consortium in the first wave.”
“This strategy was to expand testing outlets available to the public but more importantly to ensure price control standardization and avoid exploitation of the public, as there were huge cost variations in PCR testing in the private sector ranging from N70,000 to as high as N300,000 per PCR test.”
“Mr. Governor has approved the reduction in the cost of the PCR test, bringing us to the new cost of N45,250 per PCR test. What this implies is that the Lagos State Government will enforce the new cost of PCR tests conducted at the private laboratories’ consortium.”
The Commissioner called on citizens, particularly inbound passengers who are required by law to test on arrival, to reciprocate this gesture by booking, paying, and presenting themselves at any of the accredited laboratories’ consortium on approved days for their PCR tests on arrival in Lagos.
He added that further reviews will be made in due course, especially as the ongoing COVID vaccination campaign gains momentum.
Abayomi, however, noted that PCR tests at approved public health laboratories and sample collection centers around the State remain absolutely free for citizens who need to test for COVID; either because they have COVID-like symptoms or have been exposed to a positive case.