The Governor Celestino Gallares Memorial Hospital (GCGMH) will have the capacity to conduct at least 600 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests in a day once its molecular laboratory is certified by the Department of Health (DOH) to operate as a coronavirus disease (COVID)-19 testing center, said a health official on Tuesday.
GCGMH chief of doctors Dr. Mutya Kismet Macuno, in an interview over station dyRD’s “Inyong Alagad” program, said that they will soon have three PCR machines that can each conduct 96 tests in eight hours or a total of about 600 tests in 16 hours.
Macuno explained that the hospital ordered a PCR machine on top of the one that arrived last week through the procurement of the province.
The DOH meanwhile is also expected to allocate another PCR machine for the province “soon.”
According to Macuno, the GCGMH has entered the fourth phase of the five-stage accreditation process for COVID-19 testing centers.
However, the GCGMH is still awaiting several equipment to be delivered before it gets accredited by higher health authorities.
“Dunay daghang ekipo na hilanglan para makafunction na g’yud ang atong molecular laboratory, dili raman na ang PCR machine,” she said.
Macuno said that Governor Arthur Yap has offered to personally make follow-ups on the orders to expedite their delivery from the suppliers.
On Inyong Alagad’s Monday edition, the health official said that they may be able to start the operations of the molecular lab in three weeks after the procurement of equipment and the implementation of biosafety measures.
“Akong gi-update si Gov na to ensure na dunay biosafety, we are looking at the next three weeks na maka take off na g’yud ta sa atong kaugalingon na pagkuha og PCR,” she said.
The province of Bohol currently does not have a COVID-19 testing center causing longer waiting periods for the release of tests results of locals suspected of being infected with the disease and their contacts.
Swab samples extracted from individuals in Bohol need to be shipped to Cebu City for testing at the Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center or the DOH 7’s laboratory which both have been swamped with samples from the COVID-stricken city and other provinces in the region. (R. Tutas)