More Tests Urged As Controls Eased

Dr. Patricio Palmes

Restrictions on quarantine protocols are expected to further reduce as most of the country proceed to the “new normal.”

The national Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) for emerging infectious disease has placed Western Visayas under the modified GCQ effective June 1, 2020.

The new category MGCQ means further easing of controls under GCQ, the IATF announced.

Dr. Patricio Palmes, MD. of the West Visayas State University Medical Center (WVSU-MC) stressed the need for more laboratory tests “in order to give us the real figures” of the COVID-19 infection.

Dr. Palmes talked to the local media recently. He is also vice president for external affairs of the Iloilo Covid Task Force, an ad hoc group of medical professionals.

In a radio interview Dr. Palmes noted that during the early stages of COVID-19 infections, the slow testing has been attributed to the “learning curve” at the Western Visayas Medical Center lab.

More laboratory facilities for COVID-19 employing the reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) tests are expected to be operational in the next two months, Dr. Palmes said.

He disclosed that the WVSU-MC testing laboratory for COVID-19 is now in the final stages of construction and could be utilized this June.

The Iloilo provincial government through health officer Dr. Cynthia Cabangal-Ng is also building laboratory facilities at the Iloilo provincial hospital in Pototan, said Dr. Palmes.

Another COVID-19 testing laboratory is scheduled for construction in Molo, Iloilo City next month as announced earlier by Mayor Jerry Treñas.*

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