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Davao City, Philippines

PRO-11 to unveil COVID testing facility in October

September 24, 2020 - Thursday 1:09 PM by PNA

Article Banner Image COVID-19 TESTING CENTER. Officials of the Department of Science and Technology in Davao Region, University of the Philippines-Mindanao, and Police Regional Office in Davao Region show the signed memorandum of agreement for the establishment of the Covid-19 molecular testing laboratory in Camp Sgt. Quintin M. Merecido in Davao City on September 16, 2020. The facility will mainly cater to police personnel and their dependents, as well as civilian personnel of the regional police. (Photo courtesy of PRO-11 PIO)

DAVAO CITY--The chief of the Police Regional Office in Davao Region (PRO-11) is optimistic the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) molecular testing laboratory inside their headquarters here will be inaugurated next month.

In an interview on Wednesday, Brig. Gen. Filmore Escobal thanked the Department of Science and Technology in Davao Region (DOST-11) for supporting the establishment of the Covid-19 testing facility inside the Camp Sgt. Quintin M. Merecido here, saying that it would boost the research capability of PRO-11.

“The facility  is not only for Covid testing but will also be used for the research. The University of the Philippines (UP) Mindanao will provide the capacity building training for our men,” he told the Philippine News Agency (PNA).

Funded by the Philippine National Police (PNP), Escobal said the facility will be manned by police personnel who are licensed medical technicians and BS Biology graduate.

“Actually we already started the training and this coming October 5, they will undergo the online biosafety training,” he added.

The molecular laboratory will be used to test suspected Covid-19 patients who are Philippine National Police (PNP) personnel and their dependents, as well as authorized civilian patients that would need testing.

“We also accept patients who are government referrals,” Escobal said.

On September 16, a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) signing ceremony for the facility was conducted between the DOST-11, PRO-11, and UP Mindanao.

Dr. Anthony C. Sales, DOST-11 regional director, said the agency will provide financial and technical assistance that would be needed in the operation and management of the facility--particularly in the area of research and development.

Sales said the facility is the second testing center that DOST-11 helped established; the other is in partnership with the Davao de Oro provincial government.

UP-Mindanao, meanwhile, is tasked with facilitating the capacity building of facility personnel, assist in the development of a manual on the standard of operations, and provide consultancy services, said Lyre Anni Murao, the university's Philippine Genome Center Mindanao head. 

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