The Department of Health-Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) issued Certificates of Proficiency for 2022 to all 14 Philippine Red Cross (PRC) molecular laboratories across the country.
According to a statement released by PRC on Monday, July 4, all 14 molecular laboratories passed the proficiency tests, which consist of Nucleic Acid Extraction, PCR Master Mix Preparation, Real-Time RT-PCR, RT-PCR results interpretation, and RT-PCR results reporting.
All laboratories only took one take to pass and meet the RITM requirements, added PRC.
The proficiency tests are given by RITM to DOH-accredited molecular laboratories yearly.
It is a part of the institute’s quality assessment post-accreditation for the real-time detection of SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes Covid-19.
“Ang Philippine Red Cross ang kauna-unahang nagkaroon ng automated RT-PCR tests sa Pilipinas. Araw-araw, sinisikap ng aming volunteers at staff na laging maging una, laging handa, at laging nandyan para sa ating mga kababayan sa panahon ng emergency at sakuna (Philippine Red Cross is the ever to have automated RT-PCR tests in the Philippines. Everyday, the volunteers and staff stive to always be at first, always ready, and always present for our countrymen in times of emergency and disasters),” PRC chairman and Chief Executive Officer Richard Gordon said.
The first PRC laboratory started operation in April 2020 and has tested 5,605,651 swab and saliva samples for Covid-19 since then.
“The PRC’s molecular laboratories are located in (1) PRC National Blood Center, Mandaluyong City, (2) PRC Logistics and Multi-purpose Center, Mandaluyong City, (3) Port Area, Manila, (4) Ilagan City, Isabela, (5) Subic, Zambales, (6) Clark, Pampanga, (7) Batangas City, (8) Mandaue City, Cebu, (9) Passi City, Iloilo, (10) Bacolod City, Negros Occidental, (11) Cagayan de Oro City, Misamis Oriental, (12) Surigao City, Surigao del Norte (13) Cotabato City-Maguindanao area, and (14) Zamboanga City,” said in the PRC statement. (Luisa Cabato)