Once operational, the Philippine National Police’s (PNP) second coronavirus disease (Covid-19) testing laboratory in Camp Crame is expected to boost its testing capacity for police frontliners.
“Hopefully, our second RT-PCR (reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction) testing laboratory would increase our capacity to test from 300 to 450. Once automated, we might even reach 600 tests. That’s good enough to address the needs of the PNP personnel and their dependents,” PNP chief, Gen. Archie Gamboa said in a press briefing on Monday.
He said the second Covid-19 lab will be set up at the compound of the PNP Health Service in Camp Crame.
“Nandyan na yung makina. Inaayos na lang namin yung training ng mga tao (The machines are there and we just have to conduct trainings for personnel) and of course the molecular pathologists,” he added.
In May, the PNP opened its first Covid-19 testing facility, which can conduct up to 150 tests per day.
Gamboa, meanwhile, said he hopes that the PNP’s Covid-19 testing laboratories for police officers in Cebu and Davao will be operational before his retirement.
“Before the end of August, we might be able to open the Covid-19 testing laboratory in Cebu and then hopefully, before my retirement, we will open up one also in Davao but I already ordered to start the construction of the RT-PCR testing center in Davao,” he added.
Gamboa will retire from the service upon turning 56 on September 2.
The PNP reported 76 more cases among its ranks as of Sunday night, bringing the total number of cases to 2,008.
A cop who tested for Covid-19 will observe a 14-day quarantine and undergo another test. Once cleared, they have to rest for seven to 10 more days before going back to duty.
Another police front-liner died of Covid-19 on July 22, bringing the death toll among its ranks to 10.
The PNP Health Service also reported a total of 716 personnel have recovered from the disease. It is also monitoring 725 probable cases and 2,445 suspected cases. (PNA)