Laboratories across the Kingdom have the capacity to conduct 53,000 COVID-19 tests daily, the ministry of health has said. At the beginning of the pandemic the said capacity did not exceed more than 1,000 tests per day, the ministry said in a statement on Friday.
Spokesman for the Saudi Ministry of Health Dr. Muhammad Al-Abdel Ali was quoted by Saudi Press Agency (SPA) as indicating that there was a fear that coronavirus infections would pass the 200,000 mark by the end of April, but that preventive measures adopted by authorities contributed to delay the crisis by three months
The spokesman said authorities have conducted over 1.7 million laboratory tests for the COVID-19 virus in the Kingdom. The tests were conducted using partial polymerization technology since the first infection was recorded.
Dr. Al-Abdel Ali said the Kingdom was one of the first countries in the world to secure laboratory testing for the virus. It also prepared and equipped 31 laboratories to examine cases in various regions of the Kingdom, for all sectors.
Coronavirus cases in Saudi Arabia officially surpassed the 200,000 mark on Friday after 4,193 new infections were detected in the last 24 hours.
Most of the cases were found in Dammam, where officials recorded 431 new cases. Hufof recorded 399 new infections, while Riyadh recorded 383. The rest of the new cases were reported in cities and provinces around the country.
Fifty people died due to COVID-19 on Friday. This brings the virus-related death toll in the Kingdom to 1,802.