DOH: Philippines now has 18 COVID-19 testing centers
MANILA, Philippines — The Philippines now has 18 subnational laboratories capable of detecting the SARS CoV-2 or severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, which causes COVID-19.
This is after the Department of Health (DOH) certified the Philippine Genome Center in Quezon City as a COVID-19 testing center.
The country’s 18 testing laboratories are as follows:
- Research Institute for Tropical Medicine
- Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center
- San Lazaro Hospital
- Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center
- Southern Philippines Medical Center
- University of the Philippines-National Institutes of Health
- Lung Center of the Philippines
- Western Visayas Medical Center
- Bicol Public Health Laboratory
- St Luke’s Medical Center in Quezon City
- Victoriano Luna Hospital
- The Medical City
- Makati Medical Center
- Molecular Diagnostics Laboratory
- St. Luke’s Medical Center in Taguig City
- Philippine Red Cross
- Chinese General Hospital
- Philippine Genome Center
According to Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire, the country now has a daily testing capacity of 4,500.
The accredited laboratories have so far tested 68,675 individuals, she noted.
Earlier, the RITM, the country’s main COVID-19 testing center, started to scale down its operations after 43 of its staff tested positive for the respiratory disease.
DOH, however, assured that the RITM staff did not contract the virus by processing test samples.
To address the RITM backlog, some of its samples will be processed by other accredited COVID-19 testing centers such as St. Luke’s Medical Center, The Medical City, Makati Medical Center, Chinese General Hospital, and Detoxicare Molecular Diagnostics Laboratory.
DOH has ramped up the country’s COVID-19 testing with the government targeting to conduct 8,000 tests per day by the end of April. It is also eyeing to purchase about two million rapid test kits to complement its real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) tests.
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