De Venecia: Free swab test of District’s frontline workers

ALL frontliners in the Fourth District can now avail of a free swab test for COVID-19 from the Region 1 Medical Center in Dagupan City.

This after Rep. Christopher de Venecia secured the commitment of collaboration from the government-owned R1MC headed by Dr. Roland Joseph Mejia in a memorandum of agreement that guarantees free swab tests.

The signing of the MOA between De Venecia and Dr. Mejia were witnessed by Mayors Brian Lim of Dagupan City, Marilyn Lambino of Mangaldan, Constante Agbayani of San Fabian, Leo de Vera of San Jacinto and Kim Amador of Manaoag.

De Venecia underscored the importance of the swab test as it will enable the frontliners to know if they have contracted coronavirus although asymptomatic while at work.

According to the congressman, the earlier a person knows that he is COVID-19 positive, the earlier he can isolate himself to prevent the spread of the virus to his loved ones and other people.

Because of the nature of their work in this period of the pandemic, frontliners are vulnerable to infection by COVID-19 and immediate swab testing at the R1MC is important.

And, if found positive, the frontliner can seek early treatment and increase his chances of recovery, the congressman added.

The free COVID-19 testing already started last June 19, serving 50 frontliners per batch.

It can be recalled that last June 10, R1MC received a license from the Department of Health to operate a Molecular Biology to process specimens for RealTime Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT PCR) test .

The laboratory is considered a big boon to the province because swab specimens no longer have to be forwarded to the Baguio General Hospital Molecular Biology Laboratory for RT PCR confirmatory tests, which usually takes three or more days to complete.

De Venecia said the waiting time for RT PCR test results is already down to 1-2 days only. (Leonardo Micua)

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