Feb 26, 2020 13:55 UTC
  • Iran preparing to mass-produce home-made coronavirus testing kits: President Rouhani

President Hassan Rouhani says the coronavirus testing kits developed by Iranian experts are undergoing final tests and will enter the mass-production stage in the near future.

All the initial tests on the package have proven to be “positive and credible,” The president told a government meeting in Tehran on Wednesday, saying the equipment would undergo its final examination process over the next couple of days, Press TV reported.

“Shortly, we will be able to make hundreds of thousands and even millions of these kits, and place them at the disposal of all of the country’s hospitals” he said, noting that the package would enable medics to easily identify patients.

The president warned against either “understatement or overstatement” of the extent of the problem inside the country, and ruled out the possibility of any lockdowns.

“There will be no lockdowns of neighborhoods or cities. Only individual people showing the initial symptoms of the virus would be quarantined,” he said.

President Rouhani referred to the National Taskforce for Fighting Coronavirus, which has been formed on his orders, as the only apparatus that could be trusted concerning preventative directives and precise statistics.

A bigger threat than coronavirus

The president said what demands even more attention than coronavirus itself was “the virus of fear, anxiety, ambivalence, and distrust among the people,” which has to be tackled properly as it could lead to other problems if not contained.

President Rouhani pointed to stepped-up US attempts, over the past two years, to bring to a standstill economic activities and productivity inside Iran, cautioning that “the coronavirus should not turn into a weapon in the hands of the enemies” to achieve that objective.

As a case in point, he referred to remarks made on Tuesday by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who accused Beijing and Tehran of censoring information about the outbreak and putting the rest of the world at greater risk.

“They themselves are afflicted with the coronavirus over there. They themselves lost 16,000 people to flu, but do not make any references to it,” Rouhani said, noting that the Iranian nation is itself acutely aware of the matter and exercises due care.

The president, meanwhile, praised the efforts made across the country over the past couple of weeks in terms of placing those afflicted in quarantine, treating them, preventing the outbreak’s further spread, and the security forces’ confrontation with those seeking to hoard supplies.

Overcoming the virus may take “up to three weeks,” he noted, adding that the outbreak could not possibly turn out to be more dangerous than flu — that the country has already tackled.

Over all, there has been a decrease in the number of the visits that are made by those with suspected symptoms to medical facilities. The process of treating the patients reflect progress too, he stated, adding, “This is because we are on top of this trend.”