Arriving COVID-19 test kits can test almost 10 million people – Galvez

The country will be getting thousands of COVID-19 test kits “soon,” enough to test almost ten million people, a National Task Force on COVID-19 official said Friday.

Task force chief implementer Carlito Galvez, Jr. said they are expecting 230,857 polymerase chain reaction-based kits which can be used on 8,544,282 people. The Budget Department also procured 15,700 kits that can serve another 1,233,750 patients, he added.

“Having all these test kits, we will now be able to test 9,838,032 in total,” said Galvez during an online presser.

As for testing capacity, however, there are currently 62 certified laboratories for COVID-19 testing, Galvez reported, adding that Caraga is the only region without its own testing facility.

These laboratories have conducted 553,197 tests in total, but can hit at most only 15,000 tests in a day, which happened on June 16, he said.

The Department of Health had also raised delays on reporting new cases due to insufficient manpower and technical glitches. Some cases are still coming in from its validation backlog which had drawn questions on the country’s actual COVID-19 situation. 

To date, the nationwide tally is over 28,000, and researchers have sounded the alarm, saying we’re on track to reaching 35,000 if not 40,000 by the end of the month.

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