Fiso Group, Pacific Health Plus and Rako Science have teamed up to deliver saliva testing at a community health day in Porirua, as part of preparations to deliver the test more widely in New Zealand.
The community health day will be run out of Pacific Health Plus (PHP), a healthcare provider in Cannons Creek, Porirua, servicing over 2500 patients, mainly of Pacific descent in the area, at the end of March.
Rako Science, a Kiwi-owned company has the only validated and accredited COVID-19 saliva test in New Zealand. The test is based on the University of Illinois Shield test.
“This is a very exciting partnership between a Pacific health provider operating in a community with significant health need; a leading Kiwi-science company offering accredited, cutting-edge, easy to use, quick turnaround and high accuracy Covid testing; and Fiso Group,” says John Fiso, chairman of Fiso Group and PHP.
“Through the partnership, we can ensure that our most vulnerable communities have access to the straightforward and non-invasive Covid-19 test offered by Rako,” says Mr Fiso. “PHP has 2500 patients on its books and we will deliver this test during a friendly, community health day in a culturally appropriate and approachable way.
“It is important and right that Pacific people - which represent the highest needs group in New Zealand - are the first in line for this test.
“This Covid-19 testing initiative can be easily rolled out elsewhere.
“The supply of protective gear to PHP was very slow during lockdowns last year and we do not want to get caught out again when it comes to testing, so we are being proactive with delivering what the community needs and deserves,” says Mr Fiso. “In essence, we are bringing the test directly to the community, to avoid barriers to those who most need it.”
Dr Stephen Grice, Chief Science Officer, Rako Science, said: “It is exciting to see state-of-the-art science bringing direct benefits to my friends in the Pacific community. We look forward to working with PHP to make asymptomatic surveillance testing a reality.”