26. May 2020.
Our Contribution towards Combating Pandemic

Throughout the state of emergency, Serbian Radiation and Nuclear Safety and Security Directorate (SRBATOM) was particularly active. The greatest direct contribution in support of combating COVID-19 pandemic was in the Directorate management’s tenacious initiative to obtain donations of full equipment packages for the national COVID-19 centres. So far, a donation worth more than 140,000 euros has been provided.

This donation is seen as a significant reinforcement of Serbian resources in containing the current pandemic, as already confirmed by a letter of gratitude sent to SRBATOM by the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Serbia.

As early as March, SRBATOM management initiated a donation of full real time RT-PCR test kits from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). Once the initiative received positive reactions from the IAEA, the Directorate extended this request on 08 April to yet another kit. The first shipment, whose value exceeds 60,000 euros has already arrived in Serbia and is to be installed in the Torlak Institute of Immunology and Virology. The next shipment kit, worth around 84,000 euros is expected and intended for the Scientific Veterinary Institute Novi Sad.

The donation package contains both larger and smaller laboratory components – instruments for molecular-diagnostic testing, a certain number of reagents and diagnostic kits for sample testing itself, as well as a portion of protective gear used in laboratories and laboratory sampling consumables.

The donated instruments comprise a Real-Time PCR device used to detect virus genome segments, biosafety cabinets for BSL 2 (1 piece) and BSL 3 (1 piece) used for sample processing and testing that ensure the safe work of diagnosticians in terms of security. In addition, these also include a laboratory micro centrifuge, necessary during sample processing and testing, as well as smaller kit components (shakers, micropipettes) also required in the course of sample testing.

The donation includes reagents such as primer kits, probes and diagnostic specific kits for SARS-CoV-2, that is COVID-19 infection, as well as reagents and plastic consumables used in molecular diagnostics.

A part of donation consists of consumables used for swab and blood sampling and other tools (plastic tubes, test-tubes, cuvettes, etc.), as well as full protective gear for laboratory diagnosticians and sampling staff, such as disposable protective suits, masks, shoe covers, and gloves.

Besides the above exceptional activities, a number of other urgent activities have been finalized as well: the import and export of medical equipment and material, the analysis of the environmental radioactivity monitoring report, the public risk monitoring in Serbia from the forest fires in Chernobyl, the preparation of the forthcoming TC project cycle with the IAEA, the preparation of regional project proposals for the IAEA, and finally the overall of 235 documents and 11 letters in e-form.