Gov’t eyes tests on suspected cases, frontliners in high-risk areas by May 15
MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine government is eyeing the testing of all patients under investigation (PUIs) for coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and frontliners in areas under extended enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) by the last day of quarantine on May 15.
National Task Force (NTF) against COVID-19 chief implementer Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. said this during the online meeting of the House’s Defeat COVID-19 Committee (DCC) Peace and Order Cluster.
“On the red areas, those declared ECQ, we are planning to clear all the PUIs and suspected COVID cases and frontliners not later than 15 May 2020 so that the red areas can be evaluated to become orange or yellow areas,” Galvez said.
Galvez said that the National Capital Region, which is also covered by the extended implementation of the ECQ where most of the cases are located, is considered as the “epicenter” of the coronavirus pandemic in the country.
“We are planning to conduct massive and expanded testing aggressively with the testing of all the PUIs, PUMs, and frontliners in NCR not later than May 2020,” Galvez said.
“We consider that the NCR is the epicenter considering that it has the affectation of 70% and we believe that the NCR is the center of gravity. Once we have finished and are able to flatten the curve in NCR, we believe we are 70% finished and (have won) the fight against COVID,” he added.
Further, Galvez said that they will work to increase the country’s testing capacity to 20,000 per day before May 15 and to 30,000 per day before May 30, with 24-to-48-hour release of the results.
As of April 28, there are 7,958 COVID-19 cases in the country, with the death toll at 530. Meanwhile, 975 patients have recovered from the disease.
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