MANILA – The city government of Marikina has set up a laboratory testing center for the early detection of confirmed cases of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) in the city.
Mayor Marcelino Teodoro said the city partnered with Manila Health Tek, Inc., the first biotechnology private company for health in the country, which is a spinoff of the University of the Philippines – Manila.
The company will supply 3,000 Covid-19 testing kits to the city.
“Ito ay para agad-agad ma-test natin ang (This is for us to immediately test) persons under monitoring or PUMs. This will liberate a person after being subject to test. Ito, ang ganda nito. Hindi na siya mag-aalala pa (This is the good thing about this. They don’t have to worry anymore),” Teodoro said Friday.
He said the doctors of the Marikina City Health Office (CHO) will be trained by scientists and doctors of the Manila Health Tek.
Teodoro added that the company will also help put up molecular laboratories.
Maria Carmen Ocampo, sales and marketing manager of Manila Health Tek, said their office is located in Barangay Sta. Elena, so it would be easier for them to put up these facilities.
Ocampo explained that their kits test whether a person got infected with Covid-19.
“Ang tine-test po nito ay ang virus mismo kaya agad po nade-detect. Once infected ang isang tao, made-detect agad (The test is for the virus itself so it can be detected immediately. Once a person is infected, it will be immediately known),” she said.
Teodoro and Ocampo clarified that such a move does not disrupt the protocol of the Department of Health (DOH).
“We are not disrupting the protocol of DOH, because whoever is going to get tested here will still get tested at RITM (Research Institute for Tropical Medicine). We are just helping to have early detection,” he said.
Ocampo noted that their testing kits are 95-percent accurate.
Teodoro said if a person is experiencing Covid-19 symptoms, he/she may call Marikina Rescue 161.
The patient will be fetched by an ambulance as he/she will be rushed to the CHO, whose trained doctors and staff will coordinate with the testing center.
He said the results will be out in just two hours.
Ocampo said the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) tapped them to develop the testing kits for Covid-19.
“All our scientists who developed the Covid-19 testing kits are Filipinos,” she said.
Teodoro showed to the media the decontamination tents that he is planning to buy and put at the City Hall, CHO, and other crowded areas in Marikina City.
In a demonstration, he also presented the misting equipment that will be used to disinfect establishments in the city.
“This is part of our massive disinfection measure in the city. We want to ensure all our residents that all necessary precautionary measures are being done by the local government,” Teodoro said.
The disinfectant being used in the misting is plant-based so it is safe for the public.
He urged his constituents to remain calm as they are all in this together as a community, saying Covid-19 will never defeat a united community like Marikina. (PNA)