News & Innovation

Laurent Bleu: Giving back to the community in a global pandemic

July 02, 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic is an ongoing pandemic that has since caused one of the largest global, social and economic disruptions in history. To date, this virus has infected 174 million people and claimed the lives of 3.7 million people. One measure practised worldwide to combat the rising number of COVID-19 cases is mass-testing on the population. The fundamental reason for mass-testing is to ensure that those who are positive are immediately isolated and quarantined to prevent further transmission of the virus.


Laurent Bleu: Giving back to the community in a global pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic is an ongoing pandemic that has since caused one of the largest global, social and economic disruptions in history. To date, this virus has infected 174 million people and claimed the lives of 3.7 million people. One measure practised worldwide to combat the rising number of COVID-19 cases is mass-testing on the population. The fundamental reason for mass-testing is to ensure that those who are positive are immediately isolated and quarantined to prevent further transmission of the virus.

 

COVID-19 Tests

Reverse Transcription–Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR)

Antigen Rapid Test Kit (RTK-Ag)

Type

Diagnostic test

Screening test

Purpose

Detect and confirm the presence of COVID-19 virus at an accurate level

Detect the presence of the virus’ antigen, but less accurate in diagnosing

Method(s)

Nose and mouth swab

Nose swab

 

However, getting tested for COVID-19 isn’t that easy. A common hurdle for most is its pricing. In Kuala Lumpur, prices of RT-PCR tests and RTK-Ag tests can range between RM210 - RM400 per person and RM90 - RM150 per person respectively. For some, this may be a hefty sum to get themselves checked. It may also hold a person back from getting tested for COVID-19. And this, translates to the risk of transmitting the virus to others.

Helping migrants receive free COVID-19 tests.

Laurent Bleu Medical Clinic is therefore doing its part to flatten the curve through its corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiative. We partnered BLESS Ministry between 26 and 29 August 2020 to provide free RT-PCR tests to 29 migrants in Kuala Lumpur – an initiative that was fully sponsored by BLESS Ministry. The migrants were single parents from the Philippines who experienced financial difficulties in undergoing the test in order to rejoin work.  

Fattening the curve with affordable COVID-19 testing.

Subsequently, Laurent Bleu embarked on providing the cheapest COVID-19 tests in Kuala Lumpur by offering the RTK-Ag test at RM60 and RT-PCR test at RM190. Since 1 December 2020, we have since provided this service to over 75,000 people. This initiative, also part of our CSR programme, is expected to continue until such time deemed unnecessary.

A first-hand encounter from a frontliner’s perspective.

Dr. Noradhiah Tumirin, an ex-military medical officer, shared her experience on the COVID-19 testing: “In the earlier stages of COVID-19 in Malaysia, it was a norm to walk house-to-house in personal protective equipment (PPE) under the hot sun. We walked through red zone areas where many positive cases resided - a place no one dared enter. Fast-forward 1.5 years later, I am still actively involved in COVID-19 testing. As frontliners, we strive to move forward with mass-testing to help communities with early detection and further treatment before complications arise. I will never stop giving my best to keep fighting the good fight in this ‘invisible’ war until we win, Malaysia wins, and the whole world wins.”

Laurent Bleu Medical Clinic believes that everybody should have equal access to medical services and treatment, including getting COVID-19 tests. As such, we are committed to making COVID-19 testing affordable, available and accessible to everybody.

Written by

Trina Phua, Dietitian

Content provided by Laurent Bleu Medical Clinic

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