The laboratories in Moscow will carry out up to 13,000 tests for the novel coronavirus per day, Deputy Mayor Anastasiya Rakova said on Thursday.
"Last week, only federal laboratories were authorized to conduct tests. We have fully joined this effort, launching nine laboratories. Today we are conducting nearly 4,000 tests for the coronavirus in Moscow laboratories. In the coming week we will boost the capacity to 13,000 [tests] per day," Rakova told a TV program hosted by Vladimir Solovyov on Rossiya-1 channel, TASS reports.
According to Rakova, the authorities were preparing for all scenarios of how the events would unfold. "Increasing the number of people who are to be tested for the coronavirus is a necessary condition and a crucial step for stopping the spread of the virus," she stressed.
In late December 2019, Chinese authorities notified the World Health Organization (WHO) about the outbreak of a previously unknown pneumonia in the city of Wuhan, central China. Since then, cases of the novel coronavirus - named COVID-19 by the WHO - have been reported in more than 150 countries.
On March 11, the WHO declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic. As of now, a total of 462,684 people have contracted the coronavirus and 20,834 people have died globally, according to the latest WHO data. Russia has recorded 840 coronavirus cases, with more than half of them in Moscow. Some 38 people have recovered and have been discharged from hospitals, and two people have died.