Malta is one of the first countries in Europe that will start using a specialised machine to carry out COVID-19 tests.

This was said by Health Minister Chris Fearne on Thursday during a visit to the Pathology Department at Mater Dei.

Fearne was shown the final preparations being undertaken for this robotic machine to start being used in the coming hours.

The machine permits the hospital to process around 800 tests a day, reducing the test processing times to minutes. This will enable health authorities to give test results on the day they are taken.

Fearne said Malta had access to this equipment because it had taken all the necessary proactive action in time, including the acquisition of such equipment.

This, he said, was one of a number of measures being taken by his ministry to control the infection. The more tests carried out at this early stage, the better placed the country would be to give immediate care to positive patients and isolate them immediately to stop the spread.

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