UArizona Health Sciences sends Navajo Nation COVID-19 collection kits

Apr 5, 2020, 5:30 AM | Updated: 5:31 am
(University of Arizona Health Sciences photo)...
(University of Arizona Health Sciences photo)
(University of Arizona Health Sciences photo)

PHOENIX — The University of Arizona Health Sciences sent 250 COVID-19 sample collection kits to the Navajo Nation in Window Rock, Arizona, the school announced in a press release on Friday.

UArizona is doing so in an effort to combat the coronavirus outbreak at an international level.

“Regrettably, the Navajo Nation has been particularly hard hit by the coronavirus and needs these tests to help protect their community,” UArizona President Dr. Robert C. Robbins said in the release.

“We are sending these sample collection kits in the hopes they can assist in their efforts to address COVID-19 and we thank the president, the speaker and the council for their tireless work.”

In the last week, over 1,650 collection kits were made by David Harris, professor of immunobiology and director of the Biorepository in the UArizona College of Medicine – Tucson, and volunteers from his lab.

Harris also intends to make 500 kits per day should his lab receive additional swabs, which are required in order to produce thousands of kits over the next two weeks to aid the shortage in southern Arizona and beyond.

Swabs are just one of the components of the collection kit.

Earlier in the week, UArizona gave 1,000 collection kits to Banner – University Medical Center Tucson over a two-day period.

“On behalf of the Navajo Nation, I wish to extend a huge, heartfelt thank you to all of the gracious and hardworking staff and volunteers that contributed their hard work and resources to these COVID-19 collection kits,” said Navajo Nation Speaker of the Council Seth Damon said in the release.

“Knowing we have a willing partner in the University of Arizona gives us greater hope that our people will overcome this together.”

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UArizona Health Sciences sends Navajo Nation COVID-19 collection kits