La Union facility averages 60 tests for Covid-19 daily

La Union facility averages 60 tests for Covid-19 daily

SAN FERNANDO CITY, La Union – The Ilocos Training and Regional Medical Center (ITRMC) here now conducts an average of 60 reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) tests for coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) daily since its molecular laboratory was accredited by the Department of Health.

In a forum by the Philippine Information Agency Region 1 (Ilocos) on Friday, ITRMC chief, Dr. Eduardo Badua III said they have tested over 700 people for Covid-19 and 660 test results already came out since over a week ago.

“We have no backlogs since we started testing in our molecular laboratory. The pending test results out of the 700 plus are still within the 24 to 48-hour period,” Badua said.

He said ITRMC’s molecular laboratory was accredited to do Covid-19 testing on May 20 but they just started conducting tests over a week ago.

ITRMC is the first and the only accredited molecular laboratory in the entire Ilocos Region to do Covid-19 testing.

Badua said the infectious disease committee of the center and all the workers are ensuring that standard health protocols, as well as waste management, are strictly followed in the center.

“Employees are doing everything with complete personal protective equipment including waste management,” Badua said.

He said that they have also tested some 300 of ITRMC’s medical workers and front-liners, and none of them tested positive as of June 5.

“We are hoping that there will be no positive cases among them and they remain healthy,” he said.

Meanwhile, the ITRMC outpatient department will reopen on June 8 under the “new normal”.

Badua said prior to their reopening of the outpatient department, officials of all concerned bio-safety departments such as the Department of Health and World Health Organization have inspected the hospital.

He said they will limit the number of people seeking medical consultation to avoid long waiting times and they will be attended to in the shortest possible time.

ITRMC previously catered to 500 to 600 outpatients daily.

“It will not be the same as before the pandemic. We have also retrofitted our consultation areas for the new normal,” he said.

Meanwhile, Dr. Unity Cortez, ITRMC chief of medical professional staff, said the hospital will continue to implement the e-Konsultasyon (online consultation), which was launched on March 31.

Online appointment is a must before proceeding to the hospital as an outpatient. There will be call and care navigation days, and safe physical distancing and other health protocols will be observed. Hilda Austria /PNA –