The Registrar and Chief Executive Officer, Medical Laboratory Science Council of Nigeria (MLSCN) Dr Tosan Erhabor has called for the manufacture or importation of only quality in – vitro diagnostics (IVDs) to ensure accurate and reliable medical laboratory diagnosis in the country. He made the call on Friday, May 27, 2022 in Abuja during the signing of the joint implementation plan (JIP) between MLSCN and Jhpiego Corporation, an affiliate of John Hopkins USA. The joint implementation plan aims to integrate the WHO collaborative registration procedure (CRP) for in-vitro diagnostics devices into MLSCN registration procedure for IVDs.

The Registrar, while commending Jhpiego for taking the right steps by seeking to collaborate with the regulator, noted the MLSCN had done so much in in-vitro diagnostics regulation in Nigeria with an internationally accredited facility. He, therefore, assured of the agency’s readiness “to abide by this joint implementation plan to navigate current licensure and registration requirements for IVDs in Nigeria.”

Erhabor who credited the Quality Tripod developed by his administration for helping IVD, equipment calibration, and External Quality Assessment (EQA) facilities of MLSCN benchmark international best practices, also noted that two out of the three facilities owned by MLSCN had received ISO accreditation, while the third was almost ready for accreditation. He, therefore, encouraged Jhpiego to consider incorporating EQA into their project, adding that, “It is an area that MLSCN has a very strong platform with its accredited facility – the National External Quality Assessment Laboratory in Saye Zaria, Kaduna State.”

Earlier, the Country Director, Jhpiego in Nigeria, Dr A Adetiloye, while expressing delight at the partnership agreement with MLSCN, said that Jhpiego, a non- profit organization for international health, is affiliated with John Hopkins University and was founded in 1973. He described MLSCN as a reliable partner in Nigeria, adding: “We have similarities in our vision and mission of saving lives of Nigerians by insisting on quality medical laboratory professionals, products and services”. According to him, the partnership “will seek to accelerate product validation and regulatory approval for IVDs in Nigeria in a way manufacturers will easily navigate current licensure and registration requirement for IVDs”.

Again, he noted that Jhpiego had worked with the Federal Government of Nigeria to save Nigerians with high impact health interventions in malaria, preventions and treatment, maternal and child health, TB/HIV, sexual and reproductive health, family planning, and global health security – a platform working in preparation for the next epidemic such as COVID-19, and now wants to collaborate with MLSCN on the regulation, production, importation, sales and stocking of IVDs in Nigeria.

While commending the Registrar/CEO, MLSCN, Dr Tosan Erhabor for his leadership qualities and accomplishments in the health sector, the Country Director noted that both organizations have a lot to do together.

The Registrar/CEO signed the joint implementation plan on behalf of MLSCN while the Country Director signed on behalf of Jhpiego.