Dagupan starts mass testing of frontliners for COVID-19
DAGUPAN CITY –– The City Health Office started a four-day risk-based testing of Dagupan’s frontliners battling the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) on Wednesday, beginning with 144 medical frontliners at the Dagupan Astrodome.
Dr. Ophelia Rivera, the city’s focal person on COVID 19 issues, said specimens taken from the frontliners would be sent to the Philippine Red Cross laboratory in Manila every afternoon. The results will be electronically transmitted to the CHO within 48 hours.
Mayor Brian Lim said the Red Cross offered the services of its SARS-CoV-2 laboratories under an agreement. Lim was the first frontliner to be swabbed. “We are at a certain level of risk because of the nature of our job,” Lim said.
The mayor said the activity ensures the safety of doctors and nurses, the police, firemen, members of the city’s Public Order and Safety Office, employees of the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology, and village officials, who deal with patients or suspected infection cases each day.
Also to be tested would be employees of private hospitals and high-risk industries, like banks, delivery service, market vendors, and boatmen, Lim said.
The tests will help experts determine who among the city’s population are vulnerable to infection because of pre-existing ailments, as well as people who may have contracted the virus but do not exhibit any of the symptoms.
CHO will initiate the contact tracing process if anyone tests positive for the disease.
Lim said the CHO would also undertake random tests on various sectors in the city.
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