Mayor Benjamin B. Magalong signed Resolution No. 359, series of 2020 expressing the sincerest gratitude of the people and officialdom of the city government of Baguio to Benguet caretaker congressman and Anti-Crime and Terrorism through Community Involvement and Support (ACT-CIS) Party-list Rep. Eric Go Yap for willfully allowing the reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and automated extraction machines that he donated to the Benguet General Hospital (BeGH) to be temporarily loaned to the Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center (BGHMC) thereby in speeding up the release of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) test results by the designated sub-national testing center.
Magalong affixed his signature to the aforesaid resolution on June 22, 2020 after the same was unanimously passed by the City Council during its regular session last June 15, 2020.
“Congressman Yap’s kind gesture in allowing the use of the RT-PCR and automated extraction machines and consumables purchased from his personal resources earlier donated to BeGH to be openly used by BGHMC to further improve its testing capacity and speed up the release of swab test results is worth of recognition not only by the people and officialdom of Baguio City but also those in other areas of Northern Luzon being served by the sub-national testing laboratory,” the resolution stated.
Earlier, the BGHMC was one of the first five sub-national testing laboratories accredited by the health department to independently release COVID-19 test results, especially coming from the Northern Luzon area, to help in decongesting the Manila-based Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) at the start of the outbreak of the deadly virus in the country early march this year.
The council claimed that the BGHMC, at the onset of its testing operation, was only able to perform some 600 to 800 test per day despite the presence of a significant number of RT-PCR machines because of the alleged manual extraction of swab specimens that resulted to the serious delays in the release of test results to as long as 10 days in some instances.
On May 21, 2020, Congressman Yap donated to BeGH more than P5 million worth of anti COVID-19 equipment that included a RT-PCR machine, an automated extraction machine and its consumables, to be used purposely for the establishment of a molecular laboratory in the La Trinidad-based government health facility.
Subsequently, the BeGH management, upon Congressman Yap’s consent, temporarily loaned the RT-PCR and automated extraction machines with consumables to the BGHMC for free use through a memorandum of agreement for the urgent need of the latter in speeding up the release of swab test results coming from the different parts of its service area in Northern Luzon that resulted in the significant reduction on the period of release of such results to only 3 to 4 days.
The council stipulated that no less than BGHMC officials and pathologists recognized the enormous contribution of the loaned RT-PCR and automated extraction machines in easing the burden from them and speeding up the release of swab test results from more than 10 days to only 3 to 4 days allowing concerned local governments to implement appropriate measures in preventing the spread of the deadly virus in their areas of jurisdiction.
By Dexter A. See
Photo by: Armando Bolislis
You might also like: