The Provincial Government of Bohol is planning to establish a coronavirus disease (COVID) 19 testing laboratory at the Bohol Medical Care Institute (BMCI) as part of efforts to speed up the release of test results particularly for returning Boholanos who are required to undergo quarantine upon arrival in the province.
Governor Art Yap in a letter sent to Department of Health (DOH) 7 regional director Dr. Jaime Bernadas applied for construction of the laboratory at the healthcare facility which mostly caters to indigents.
“A local COVID-19 facility will definitely ease, as they undergo the madatory 14-day quarantine, the anxiety that they, their families and Bohoalnos, in general, feel while waiting for the results of their polymerase chain reaction tests. Understandably, the results of locally done tests can be released earlier,” Yap said.
Meanwhile, the Provincial Board (PB) passed on Tuesday a resolution supporting the Capitol’s application before the DOH 7.
The PB resolution as pointed out by Yap was among requirements needed for the application.
Bohol currently relies on Cebu for the testing of swab samples at the Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center and DOH 7 laboratory which both have been swamped with testing for various localities in the region including virus hot spot Cebu City.
Test results sent by Bohol to Cebu usually take more than a week to be released.
Bohol’s main public healthcare facility, the DOH-run Governor Celestino Gallares Memorial Hospital in Tagbilaran City is nearing the completion of its molecular laboratory for COVID-19 testing.
Dr. Mutya Macuno, the hospital’s medical chief, projected that the laboratory will be operational by mid-July following several delays caused by the late delivery of equipment from various parts of the country and the world.
The Capitol has also set a lofty goal of establishing COVID-19 testing centers in key entry points of the province such as the Bohol Panglao International Airport and at the seaports of Tagbilaran City, Tubigon, Getafe, Talibon, Ubay and Jagna. (rt)