Improved testing capacity in BLISTT noted

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The Cordillera office of the health department reported a significant increase in the capacity of local governments in the Baguio-La Trinidad-Itogon-Sablan-Tuba-Tublay (BLISTT) for the early detection of the dreaded Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) among members of the vulnerable sectors that allow for the immediate implementation of infection prevention and control strategies.

City Health Officer Dr. Rowena Galpo reported that the sustained improvement in the testing capacity of the various local governments have resulted to the identification of high risk sectors where aggressive contact tracing and expanded tracing will be done to ascertain the percentage of the population that is infected with the virus.

Based on the data obtained from the DOH-CAR, some 48,505 Baguio residents were tested that represents 13.10 percent of the city’s population as Of October 16, 2020 where the number of tested individuals increased to 62,451 or 16.87 percent of the city’s populated as of November 15, 2020.

Benguet was able to test some 27,144 individuals which is equivalent to 5.65 percent as of October 15, 2020 but the number of tested persons rose to 42,11 or 8.67 percent as of November 15, 2020.

In the case of La Trinidad, some 13,040 individuals were tested or 9.4 percent of the town’s population last month compared to the 15,165 tested individuals or 10.95 percent this month.

Some 2,844 Itogon residents were tested as of October 16, 2020 which represents only 4.4 percent of the town’s population but the number of tested individuals increased to 5,356 persons or 8.25 percent as of November 15, 2020.

Initially, only 380 Sablan residents were tested as of October 16, 2020 which represents 3 percent of the town’s population but the testing capacity improved to 1,002 persons or 8.16 as of November 16, 2020.

Tuba was able to test some 2,114 individuals or 4.1 percent of the town’s population last month compared to the 3,189 persons tested or 6.24 percent as of the middle of this month.

In Tublay, there were some 451 individuals that were tested as of October 16, 2020 which represents only 2.3 percent of the town’s population but the local government’s testing capacity improved to 588 persons or 3.06 as of November 15, 2020.

For the past several months, the BLISTT local governments received a number of testing units from the  State-owned Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) as part of the latter’s corporate social responsibility to ensure that a significant percentage of the population are tested to ascertain those that have been infected with the virus for the application of strategies that will prevent further spread of the illness.

The government embarked on expanded targeted testing among the members of the vulnerable sectors in the city as part of its efforts to prevent and control the surge in the number of cases.

By Dexter A. See


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