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Bulacan to provide own molecular laboratory for swab testing
By: PPAO
Tuesday, 19 May 2020
CITY OF MALOLOS – The Provincial Government of Bulacan headed by Governor Daniel R. Fernando seeks to expand mass testing capacity for COVID-19 by building the province’s very own molecular laboratory at the Bulacan Medical Center.

Due to the influx of backlogs from the testing laboratories in the country, Bulacan has only limited available laboratories to submit the collected swab test specimens from the province.

Currently, the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) and Department of Health (DOH) are receiving specimens from Bulacan.

Fernando said that the province is in need of its own molecular laboratory for faster acquisition of results from swab testing.

"Kailangan na natin ng sarili nating laboratory dahil ngayon, siksikan na ang ibang testing center na pinagpapasahan ng mga swab kits. We need to identify who is negative and who is positive, lalo na sa mga nasa laylayan ng lipunan na nakalagay sa datos natin. Kinakailangan ma-swab natin ang mga iyon," the governor said.

According to Fernando, the construction of the molecular laboratory has already started and once completed, it will not only benefit COVID-19 patients but also other cases of diseases.

"Ngayon ay nagsisimula na ang paglilipat ng mga gamit sa pagtatayuan ng lab. Kapag iyan ay nagawa na, magtutuluy-tuloy na yan. Ang iintayin na lang natin ay ang vaccine laban sa COVID-19. Pero hanggang wala pa ang vaccine, mag-operate tayo diyan sa gagawing molecular lab. Isa pa, hindi lang sa sakit na COVID-19 magagamit itong molecular lab na ilalagay natin sa BMC but even in other cases of diseases," he added.

According to Incident Commander and Provincial Health Office-Public Heath Head Dr. Jocelyn Gomez, the PGB have recently entered into a memorandum of agreement with the PRC which provides 1,428 swab testing kits to the province packaged with the process of obtaining results of the collected specimen along with the help of the laboratory from the DOH that also offers to test the swab test specimens from the province.

In addition, the PGB will also enter into an agreement with Jose B. Lingad Memorial General Hospital (JBLMGH) in San Fernando, Pampanga which is expected to accept swab test specimens from Bulacan within this week.

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