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Antigua and Barbuda will be relying on the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) a while longer to test people suspected of having Covid-19.

This was disclosed by Health Minister Molwyn Joseph on state media last night. He said there were further steps to be taken before independent local testing can officially begin on island.

Consultant pathologist Dr Lester Simon, who is in charge of the newly built laboratory, recently told media that testing had started, however all results must still be validated by CARPHA.

The minister also described the country as “essentially Covid-free”.

The country has officially recorded 26 cases of the virus and three deaths. Joseph added that the remaining 23 had recovered, with one sole case still at Mount St John’s Medical Centre.

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