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The government is not the leading laboratory that conducts testing of individuals for coronavirus illness.

The Philippine Red Cross (PRC) holds the crown as the top laboratory with the most number of test output in the country. The humanitarian group has so far conducted almost half a million tests as part of efforts to help contain the spread of the outbreak, according to Senator Richard Gordon.

Gordon, chairman of Red Cross, said the organization has a 40,000 daily testing capacity and can further increase such output.

“PRC is still on top in spite of the fact that we only started on April 14. We have conducted almost 500,000 tests. With our current testing capacity of 40,000 tests a day, we could still increase our output and do more tests daily,” he wrote on Facebook.

“Our records show that a total of 484,151 tests have been processed in our different laboratories across the country as of August 15, 2020,” he said.

Gordon said testing remained a key factor to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. “As I said then, in order to cure people we need to first unmask the invisible enemy that has hidden behind our people who
unwillingly became the virus’ hosts. And we can only do that by testing,” he said.

A swab test costs P4,000 at the Red Cross. The test results will be known in 24 to 48 days.

In the laboratory test output list topped by PRC, the state-run Research Institute for Tropical Medicine came second with 203,577 tests.

Other COVID laboratories in the list are Detoxicare (181,370), Baguio General Hospital (87,762), Chinese General Hospital (76,094), Western Visayas Medical Center (59,041), Cebu TB Reference Lab (55,577), Jose
B. Lingad Memorial General Hospital (56,191), and St. Luke’s Hospital in Bonifacio Global City (45,897).

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