Government officials on Wednesday inspected a modular laboratory for COVID-19 testing at the Veterans Memorial Medical Center (VMMC) in Quezon City.


The inspection was led by Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) Chair and Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, National Task Force Against COVID-19 Chair and Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, National Action Plan Chief Implementer Secretary Carlito Galvez, Jr., and Deputy Chief Implementer Secretary Vince Dizon.


"This is actually a big improvement for VMMC. We have been treating COVID cases [here] since the start and this is actually a very welcome development so that we can process testing of COVID cases; and I would like to thank UNILAB for making this possible," Lorenzana said.


"Magkakaroon tayo ng expanded testing at maraming makikinabang dito, lalo na ang ating mga seniors, mga uniformed soldiers at mga residente ng Quezon City," said Galvez.


Pharmaceutical and healthcare company Unilab, Inc., in collaboration with Global Medical Technologies (GMT) Manila and construction design firm ENDEC, Inc., activated the deployment of modular testing laboratories throughout the country.


The modular laboratory at VMMC can conduct 300 tests per day.


According to Dizon, there are currently 10 modular testing laboratories nationwide--four in Luzon, two in Visayas, and four in Mindanao. Fifteen more modular laboratories will be built in the provinces, especially in areas without accredited COVID-19 laboratories.


Dizon emphasized the importance of putting up more testing laboratories as a precaution to prevent a second wave of infections.


"Ang importante sa testing laboratory is protection natin ito para kung magkaroon tayo ng second wave na sinasabi nila, kung mangyayari man yun, ready tayo," said Dizon.


"Kasama ito sa mga innovations sa panahon ng krisis natin sa COVID-19 kaya nagpapasalamat tayo sa private sector dahil naisip nila itong mga ganitong klaseng mga innovation...Kaya ito pinursue dahil mabilis itong gawin, within 21 days, naco-construct itong laboratory na to," he added.


Also joining the inspection were Interior and Local Government Undersecretary Bernardo Florece, Jr., Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) General Manager Jojo Garcia, DOH-National Capital Region Assistant Regional Director Dr. Paz Corrales, VMMC Director Dominador Chiong, Jr., UNILAB Vice President John Dumpit, ENDEC CEO William Johnson, ENDEC Chief Science Officer Anna Gibson, and ROMLAS Health Group Co-Founder and CEO Mitch Genato.


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