PH has highest COVID-19 testing capacity in SE Asia — DOH

By: - Reporter / @KHallareINQ
/ 06:44 PM August 06, 2020

TESTS CONTINUE Continuous testing and tracing are important to keep COVID-19 cases just like in this photo taken in Baguio City. The city government, however, laments that disregard of health protocols have resulted in an increase in infections recently. INQUIRER file photo / EV ESPIRITU

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippines is at the top spot when it comes to COVID-19 testing capacity in the entire Southeast  Asian region, the Department of Health (DOH) claimed on Thursday.

In a statement, the DOH said that as of Aug. 4, a total of 1,643,539 individuals have been tested for COVID-19, having an average of 28,938 tests per day within the last seven days.


Citing data from the publication Our World in Data, the DOH added that this number is significantly higher than Indonesia’s record of having tested a total of 908,000 individuals as of Aug. 4, and having a testing average of 14,29 per day within the seven days.

The Philippines also has 99 licensed COVID-19 testing centers, 75 of which are RT-PCR laboratories, while 24 are GeneXpert laboratories.


On Thursday, the DOH recorded 3,561 COVID-19 infections, bringing the Philippines’ total to 119,460.

The rise in numbers means that the Philippines has overtaken Indonesia in the highest number of COVID-19 cases in Southeast Asia.

Indonesia currently has 116,871 COVID-19 cases with 5,452 deaths, based on data by the John Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center.

“This increased testing capacity is the result of the government’s continuing efforts to expand its capability to identify confirmed COVID-19 cases, in congruence with the other facets of its national five-point response strategy,” the DOH said. “Other facets of this national strategy include prevention, isolation, contact tracing, and treatment.”

“Moreover, DOH reported that this expanded testing capacity has complemented the enhanced disease surveillance strategies, including active case finding, which resulted in more individuals detected and tested,” the department added.

“With enhanced disease surveillance, 148 additional areas with clustering were identified and reported within the last week. These clusters of cases contribute to the observed increase in daily case reports.”

The DOH also reported that in terms of case fatality rate (CFR), the Philippines is at 1.8 percent CFR compared to Indonesia’s record of 4.7 percent.


The country is also faring better compared to the global average of CFR at 3.7 percent, the DOH added.


For more news about the novel coronavirus click here.
What you need to know about Coronavirus.
For more information on COVID-19, call the DOH Hotline: (02) 86517800 local 1149/1150.

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