By Tara Yap
ILOILO CITY – With the upsurge in the number of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases, the mayor of Iloilo City has requested test kits from the Department of Health (DOH).
“I am speaking to the DOH. I think it’s your responsibility to provide test kits to all the different regions and I’m not just talking about Western Visayas,” said Mayor Jerry Treñas.
“We demand it as a matter of right,” an irked Treñas emphasized.
This comes as the local government unit (LGU) of Iloilo City, the regional of Western Visayas region, braced itself for eventual discovery of COVID-19 positive cases.
“We, in the LGU, are acting on our responsibilities and the DOH should act on its own responsibilities,” Treñas added.
Aside from lack of COVID-19 test kits, there was no single hospital in Western Visayas accredited by the DOH which could conduct such testing.
For the entire Visayas, the only accredited hospital is the Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center in Cebu City.
Earlier tests for suspected COVID-19 cases were mostly sent to DOH’s Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) in Metro Manila.
Meanwhile, Governor Arthur Defensor Jr. of Iloilo province has issued an executive order suspending all public events in the 42 towns and the component city of Passi to avoid the spread of COVID-19’s local transmission.