PGC testing lab to open swabbing operations for COVID-19 elective cases

Published October 9, 2020, 5:15 PM

by Alexandria Dennise San Juan

The Philippine Genome Center’s (PGC) COVID-19 Testing Laboratory, through its Clinical Genomics Laboratory, will open its drive-thru and on-foot swabbing operations on Oct. 12, Monday, to cater to private testing requests for “elective” cases.

(Photo from the Philippine Genome Center/ MANILA BULLETIN)

In its announcement on Friday, Oct. 9, the PGC said the swabbing operation is an additional service to its PhilHealth-covered testing for patients, particularly with elective cases or those without symptoms or requiring testing as part of the routine clearance.

“[This is for those] with no symptoms who require testing for clearance purposes, including but not limited to company screening for safe-to-work; travel clearance; or medical clearance prior to a procedure such as dental, surgical, among others,” the PGC explained.

Those with symptoms or are suspected to have been exposed to someone who tested positive, however, were encouraged to instead contact their local health care institutions for a thorough evaluation. This would also ensure that the individual was covered for mandatory testing for suspected and probable cases of COVID-19. 

According to PGC, a prior appointment will be required to schedule a swab test through the drive-thru and on-foot swabbing service in a bid to prevent overcrowding and to ensure that safety and security protocols are observed.

Appointments should be booked at least 24 hours before the preferred schedule that could be done by individuals or companies through answering a Case Investigation Form (CIF), which will be sent along with their contact information and complete address to [email protected] or 09989967207.

The swabbing schedule will run from Mondays to Fridays, 9 a.m. to 12 noon with the swab booth located at the Institute of Mathematics, National Science Complex at the University of the Philippines (UP) Diliman.

The UP-backed genome center noted that COVID-19 RT-PCR tests are performed “free of charge for patients eligible for testing based on the DOH Expanded COVID-19 Testing Criteria, as well as all COVID-19 cases requiring repeat testing.”

While for those ineligible, fees will be charged from P3,928.57 for senior citizens and PWDs, P5,040 for those in government, and P5,500 for a private individuals.

For more information on requesting a swab test from PGC, the public is encouraged to visit the center’s website or Facebook page.