PNP set to inaugurate new Covid-19 lab in Cebu


THE diagnostics laboratory being set up inside Camp Sotero Cabahug will be inaugurated in the first week of December 2020, Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Debold Sinas said Monday, November 30, 2020.

Sinas said he is scheduled to visit Cebu again next week for the inauguration of the laboratory, which will conduct reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) tests to detect Sars-CoV-2, the virus that causes coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).

The building has been completed, but the technicians who will operate the equipment were still undergoing training in Camp Crame.

“Hopefully, by the first week of December, baka puede na silang nandoon. Nakausap ko na rin ‘yung DOH ng Cebu and they are willing to tie up and guide our people sa umpisa,” Sinas said in a press conference Monday.

(Hopefully, they will be deployed to Cebu by the first week of December. I have talked with the Department of Health in Cebu and they are willing to tie up and guide our people.)

Meanwhile, Sinas said three high-ranking PNP officials have tested positive for Sars-CoV-2.

Police Brigadier General Ronaldo Ylagan, Firearms and Explosives Office (FEO) Director Rommil Mitra and Brigadier General Joey Runes from the Office of the Chief PNP.

Sinas said the change of command ceremony in Police Regional Office Zamboanga Peninsula (PRO-9) has been put on hold because Ylagan, the incoming director, tested positive for the virus.

Sinas said he has required regular testing for Sars-CoV-2 to immediately detect any infection.

The latest test was conducted before their scheduled command conference.

Sinas said the three generals were not able to attend the conference after their tests yielded positive results.

“It’s good because, at least, may early detection tayo. Dito sa loob ng Camp Crame, ipapatupad din namin ang targeted group swab,” he said.

(It’s good because we have an early detection system. We are also going to enforce targeted group swab in Camp Crime.)

Members of the PNP press corps may also avail themselves of the swab tests since they interact regularly with the police officials.

Sinas said members of the media who test positive for the virus may also be accommodated in the PNP isolation facilities.

As of 6 p.m. Sunday, November 29, the PNP Health Service recorded a total of 8,103 confirmed infections in the PNP.

Of the total, 370 were still active cases while 26 had died and 7,707 have recovered.

Nationwide, there were 431,630 cases as of Monday, November 30, including 8,392 deaths and 398,658 recoveries. There remained 24,580 active cases. (Marites Villamor-Ilano / SunStar Philippines)


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