Vingroup to present COVID-19 breath testing system to Health Ministry

Saturday, Jun 05, 2021 09:55

Minister of Health Nguyen Thanh Long (left) receives 30 COVID-19 breath testing system donated by Vingroup on Friday.— Photo

Local conglomerate Vingroup has successfully reached a deal with Singaporean firm Breathonix to bring to Viet Nam a COVID-19 breath testing system costing over VND460 billion (US$20 million).

Comprising 30 testing machines and disposable mouthpieces capable of collecting 2 million samples, the system will be handed over to the Ministry of Health (MoH) upon its arrival in the country.

The BreFence™ Go COVID-19 breath testing system quickly produces results in an accurate and non-invasive manner. The test has received provisional authorisation from Singapore’s Health Sciences Authority (HSA).

It operates by detecting volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in a person’s exhaled breath that are produced by biochemical reactions in human cells.

A person needs only to blow into a disposable one-way valve mouthpiece connected to a high-precision breath sampler. The exhaled breath is collected and fed into a cutting-edge mass spectrometer for measurement.

A proprietary software algorithm analyses the VOCs biomarkers and generates results in less than a minute, with an accuracy rate of 90 per cent.

Vingroup has to date contributed close to VND2.29 trillion ($99.8 million) to the country’s COVID-19 fight.

Of note, it presented 4 million doses of vaccine costing nearly VND500 billion ($21.8 million) to the ministry, and provided VND20 billion ($872,000) for clinical trials of the homegrown candidate vaccine COVIVAC, which is being developed by the ministry’s Institute of Vaccines and Medical Biologicals (IVAC).

The group also donated medical supplies worth VND30 billion ($1.3 millon) to help Bac Giang and Bac Ninh provinces cope with spreading COVID-19 outbreaks. — VNS

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