Baguio City eyeing antigen self-test kits to curb COVID-19 spread
MANILA, Philippines — Baguio City Mayor Benjamin Magalong is pushing for the use of antigen self-test kits in the city to speed up the detection of COVID-19 cases amid the threat of the Omicron variant.
According to a statement from the Public Information Office (PIO) of Baguio on Saturday, the mayor is preparing for the introduction of the “easy-to-use home testing method” through a program launch tentatively scheduled this coming week.
“Our city could be the pilot site for these do-it-yourself testing kits that are widely used in the US, Canada, Europe, and Singapore,” said Magalong.
Testing czar Vince Dizon had expressed support for the plan, according to Magalong.
The mayor said he will also seek the approval of the National Task Force for COVID-19 through Chief Implementer Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr.
The Baguio City PIO also stated that “aside from expediting testing, self-tests work to reduce the chances of spreading the virus as infected persons could undertake their own tests in the comforts of their homes without having to go to health facilities which expose other people to the health risk.”
Last October 6, 2021, Food and Drug Administration said it wrote to the Department of Health (DOH) to ask whether self-administered test kits can be useful in the country’s testing strategy.
Reporters have sought clarification from
The DOH has yet to comment on Baguio City’s plan and queries from members of the media on whether self-test kits are already allowed for public use.
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