The city government here has set aside PHP5 million for the purchase of 3,000 coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) diagnostic test kits.
Mayor Evelio Leonardia said on Monday they are waiting for a go-signal from the Department of Health (DOH) before proceeding with the purchase, which is a priority action of the city in its fight against Covid-19.
The mayor’s announcement was reiterated on a Facebook post of the Bacolod City Public Information Office (PIO) on Tuesday.
“In my latest talk with DOH-Western Visayas Director Marlyn Convocar, she told us that very soon they can put in place their facility that can do the function of the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM),” he said.
Leonardia said Bacolod now needs to know which of the test kits approved by the Food and Drug Administration is compatible.
“We are just waiting for the exact time when we are given approval by the DOH. Immediately, we will purchase a starting number of 3,000 kits. That is in the range of PHP5 million. We are ready with that. It’s just a matter of waiting for the signal of DOH,” he added.
Leonardia said other local government units have already made orders but Convocar had advised them to wait until the Western Visayas testing center in Iloilo City is completely set up.
“I hope that clarifies things. There are just so many speculations, wrong information and wrong beliefs that muddle the issue. In the meantime, the swab system being done, wherein the samples are sent to RITM in Manila, will continue,” he added.
At the RITM, the Covid-19 diagnostic test kits used are PCR (polymerase chain reaction) based laboratory kits donated by the World Health Organization. (PNA)