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By Prince Golez

Malacañang on Thursday reminded accredited testing centers to strictly follow the price ceilings on the cost of coronavirus (Covid-19) tests.

Based on the Joint Administrative Order signed by the Department of Health (DOH) and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) signed last November 24, the price range for RT-PCR (reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction) testing for private hospitals and laboratories must be between P4,500 to P5,000.

On one hand, tests should cost P3,800 in public facilities.

“Service providers can go below the floor price but cannot go above the price ceiling,” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said in a televised briefing.

“Ito na ang pinakamahal na pupuwedeng singilin. Pero marami naman ang nagcha-charge ng mas mababa. Hindi pupuwede na mas mataas pa sa price ceiling ang siling ng mga laboratories, hospitals at iba pang gumagawa ng COVID tests,” he added.

Last November 4, President Rodrigo Duterte directed the DOH and the DTI to ensure accessibility and affordability of coronavirus tests and test kits.

Both agencies must ensure that the price range is “just, equitable and sensitive” to all stakeholders, his Executive Order No. 118 said.

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