The Department of Health announced this Monday the distribution of 100,000 coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) to the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) and other subnational laboratories across the country.
Health spokesperson Ma. Rosario Vergeire told CNN Philippines that the test kits distributed were those donated by the Chinese Embassy. Aside from RITM, it was also sent to Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center in Cebu City, Southern Philippines Medical Center in Davao, Baguio General Hospital in Baguio, San Lazaro Hospital in Manila City, and Lung Center of the Philippines in Quezon City.
The allocation of the test kits was based on laboratory capacity. RITM received the majority of the test kits as they can test 600 people per day while the other laboratories can test 100 people per day. San Lazaro Hospital is currently conducting 50 tests per day.
However, Vergeire assures that the capacity for conducting tests will gradually increase.
“Hindi kailangnang mangamba ng ating mga kababayan na magkakaubusan tayo at sila ay hindi magkakaroon. Basta pumasok sa protocol at guidelines natin ang kanilang kundisyon, itetest po kayo,” Vergeire said.
[There is no need to worry that you won’t be tested. As long as you meet the criteria for testing, you will be tested.]
The criteria for testing include severe symptoms or mild symptoms for the elderly, those with preexisting sickness, and women with high-risk pregnancy.
Commonly reported COVID-19 symptoms are fever, dry cough and shortness of breath.
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