1.4K contract tracing teams formed, 11 labs in Central Luzon- RTF 3

CLARK FREEPORT ZONE, Pampanga — Central Luzon has so far formed 1,400 contact tracing teams and has 11 functional diagnostic laboratories as part of its Detect strategy to contain COVID-19.

“The region has 1,400 contact tracing teams organized with 16,132 members, 15,967 of these have already been trained as of September 7,” Regional Task Force on COVID-19 Chairperson and Office of Civil Defense Regional Director Maria Theresa Escolano disclosed during the visit of the Coordinated Operations to Defeat Epidemic Team of the National Task Force led by Chief Implementer Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr.

Contact tracing coverage is currently 98.07 percent while the current case to close contact ratio is 1:8.

“Central Luzon has 11 functional diagnostic laboratories, 8 RT-PCR and 3-Rapid PCR,” Escolano furthered.

These include Jose B. Lingad Memorial General Hospital RT-PCR, Philippine Red Cross Clark (PRC) RT-PCR, Green City Medical Center RT-PCR, PRC Subic RT-PCR, Bataan General Hospital and Medical Center (BGHMC) RT-PCR, BGHMC Rapid PCR, Central Luzon Doctors Hospital Rapid PCR, Qualimed Health Network City of San Jose del Monte RT-PCR, Bulacan Medical Center (BMC) Rapid PCR, BMC RT-PCR and Marilao Medical Diagnostic Clinic (Joni Villanueva Diagnostic Laboratory) RT-PCR.

“As of September 7, the total number of tested patients is 190,245, out of which 11,946 or about 6.28% tested positive. Testing capacity of all our laboratories is at 12,495 tests per day. Turnaround time for the release of results is 36 to 72 hours.   To note, the positivity rate of the laboratories are increasing which coincides with the increasing number of cases. No backlogs were reported from the laboratories,” Escolano furthered.

Currently, a total of 4 facilities are still pending for assessment for Rapid PCR testing and 12 facilities have pending application for RT-PCR testing. 

Best practices of local governments in Central Luzon under Detect strategy include mobile swabbing booths and drive-thru swabbing facilities.