Ilocos Hospitals Receive Specimen Collection Booths For COVID-19

Ilocos Hospitals Receive Specimen Collection Booths For COVID-19

SAN FERNANDO CITY, La Union – The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Region 1 has delivered seven units of Specimen Collection Booth (SCB) for Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) to four Ilocos medical centers on Thursday.

These SCBs will be catering for samples of swabbing patients to be manned by health front-liners so they will not be infected by the novel corona virus that causes the COVID-19 disease.

Two units each were given respectively to the Medical Center in Dagupan City, Pangasinan; Ilocos Training and Medical Center in San Fernando City, La Union; and Mariano Marcos Memorial Hospital and Medical Center in Batac City, Ilocos Norte. A unit was given to the Department of Health Region 1 Center for Health and Development in San Fernando City.
The booths were designed and made by Futuristic Aviation and Maritime Enterprise, Inc. (FAME), a DOST-PCIEERD Start-up Grant-awardee, and has passed initial performance assessment from the Regional Institute for Tropical Medicine, Philippine General Hospital, Lung Center of the Philippines, and Dr. Jose N. Rodriguez Memorial Hospital. The design was based on testing booths used by other Asian countries.

Each SCB is provided with proper ventilation and a protective barrier, as well as seats, ensuring safety and comfort for both front-liner and suspected Covid-19 patient. Its window has nitrile gloves that are constantly disinfected after every use. Disposable gloves can also be worn before wearing the SCB’s gloves.

The booth has a pressure sensor that alerts the front-liner if the door was not properly closed, or if there is air from the outside coming in. It also has a thermal scanner that records the temperature of the patient.

The test is administered by having a patient sits in front of the booth as the front-liner collects the sample by swabbing the patient’s nose and throat using the nitrile gloves built in the booth. The sample will then be given to accredited laboratories for diagnosis.

Aside from the DOST, partners and combined efforts from the Philippine Council for Industry, Energy and Emerging Technology Research and Development and Philippine Council for Health Research and Development have committed to elevating the Filipino’s quality of life through science and technology and to meet the threat of the dreaded of COVID-19 disease, which has infected almost 20,000 people in the country. Erwin Beleo / NPN