New lab in Naga hospital becomes Bicol’s 2nd coronavirus testing center
LEGAZPI CITY — The Bicol Medical Center (BMC) in Naga City, Camarines Sur province on Thursday (May 28) started testing for SARS Cov2, the coronavirus that causes COVID-19, a day after it was given a license to operate, according to the Department of Health (DOH) in Bicol.
BMC, the second coronavirus testing center in the region, has the capacity to conduct 40 tests a day on a Tuesday to Sunday schedule. Mondays are reserved for decontamination of the facility.
The BMC testing facility would use rapid polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests or machines called GeneXpert, which were already being used for tuberculosis diagnosis.
The new testing facility would serve the provinces of Camarines Sur and Camarines Norte, according to Dr. Ernie Vera, DOH Bicol director, in a statement.
Without explaining what slots meant, Vera said Camarines Sur and Naga City would have 15 slots each while Camarines Norte would have 10 slots.
The new testing lab raises Bicol’s test capacity to as many as 140 a day.
As of noon on Thursday, Bicol still has 68 COVID-19 cases.
Edited by TSB
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