Bacolod City, NegOcc boost Covid-19 testing capabilities

By Nanette Guadalquiver

May 4, 2021, 6:52 pm

BACOLOD CITY - The coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) testing capabilities of the Negros Occidental provincial government and this capital city got a boost with the opening of another molecular laboratory and the arrival of additional equipment this week.

Mayor Evelio Leonardia said on Tuesday that the city government received a unit of reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) machine donated by Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte.

The machine, a Molarray MA-6000 Real-time Quantitative PCR, arrived at the Bacolod-Silay Airport from Davao via Manila on Monday afternoon.

Leonardia said Mayor Duterte personally offered the donation to Bacolod, for which the city is “truly grateful and appreciative”.

“This is a big, big help in our fight against Covid-19 and it comes at a time when we need it the most. The RT-PCR machine will augment and speed up our testing capacity as the surge of cases in Bacolod City continues,” he added.

A virtual turnover of the machine, with the presence of the Davao City mayor, is being arranged, Leonardia said.

On May 3, Bacolod recorded 26 new cases, nine recoveries, and one death. It has a total of 7,588 cases, of which 871 are active.

In Negros Occidental, Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson said he sees a faster turn-around time of the RT-PCR test results with the opening of a Covid-19 laboratory in the southern part of the province on Monday.

The Covid-19 Molecular Laboratory located in the Valladolid District Hospital in Valladolid town is the second testing facility put up by the province in partnership with Safeguard DNA Diagnostics Inc.

“I thank the support and cooperation of local officials and partners in the health sector that paved the way for the establishment of the facility that will cater to the towns and cities in the southern Negros,” Lacson said.

The province’s other molecular laboratory is being operated by the Teresita L. Jalandoni Provincial Hospital in Silay City in the northern part of the province.
As of May 3, Negros Occidental has 12,11 Covid-19 cases, including 2,349 active cases, 9,492 recoveries, and 273 deaths. (PNA)