BAGUIO CITY (PNA) – Mayor Benjamin Magalong has asked the city’s finance committee to immediately set aside P30 million for the purchase of reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) testing kits.
As of Monday, Magalong said the city’s inventory was only 18,000, which will easily be exhausted considering the number of close contacts of patients being discovered daily.
He said that around 400 to 500 tests were being used per day, which could bring the city’s supply to a critical level in two weeks.
“With 10,000 kits left, it will be critical,” he said.
Based on the report of the city health services offices, Baguio has already conducted 27,789 PCR tests as of August 6.
Those tested include medical front-liners, other front-line service providers, close contacts of those tested positive of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), and at least 10 percent from the different sectors considered as highly susceptible to the disease or what is commonly known as the mass base random risk-based testing.
He said the city has received more than 100,000 testing kits from different donors, which the city shared with its neighboring province Benguet and other areas in the region.
He said “testing is an important component of contact tracing but it is also important to share to the Cordillera provinces because we are part of the region.”
The city is contiguous to Benguet province and is actually situated in the middle of the five Benguet towns — capital town La Trinidad, Itogon, Sablan, Tuba, and Tublay — needing that they too are made aware of their situation by conducting testing.
The mayor said that for now, the city will have to manage the remaining kits while he tries to obtain more, if he can, thus the need to do an immediate purchase.
Magalong said there was no way to see the real situation of COVID-19 without the testing.
The mayor said the situation involving bank personnel was discovered when they were subjected to PCR tests which on contact tracing was found out that several in the sector were afflicted with the disease.