Apr 2, 2020

The government is now aiming to start mass testing persons suspected of having COVID-19 on Apr. 14, COVID-19 response chief Carlito Galvez Jr. said today Apr. 2.

Galvez made the remark in a briefing from Camp Aguinaldo after the Research Institute on Tropical Medicine accredited nine hospitals for COVID-19 testing saying that: “On massive testing for PUIs and PUMs, we are also determined to fast-track the accreditation of substantial laboratories so we can start with the mass testing of the PUIs and PUMs.” 

Following this he said: “We expect that by Apr. 14, we should be able to start massive testing.”

It seems like the administration has decided to take it up a notch just a day after Galvez had said in a press briefing yesterday Apr. 1 that the task force has been attempting to take all coronavirus suspects out of their communities by Apr. 14 in compliance with a timetable set by President Duterte—however through a strict contact tracing strategy. 

This also comes two weeks after calls for mass testing of suspected COVID-19 carriers have circulated despite the Department of Health last Mar. 25 saying that the country cannot conduct mass testing just yet. The reason for this being that we are still awaiting the completion of the extension laboratories nationwide, according to Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire.

Meanwhile, the Philippine Red Cross will be starting its own mass testing initiative next week in select areas in Quezon City which can produce over 3,000 results in a day.

 

 

Header photo courtesy of Inquirer.net

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TAGS: camp aguinaldo Carlito Galvez Jr. covid-19 COVID-19 testing kits Department of Health DOH Duterte Maria Rosario Vergeire mass testing masstetstingnowph Philippine Government Philippine red cross puis pums