DOH: 9,500 COVID-19 tests per day seen once Pampanga lab launched


The testing capacity of the Philippines for the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is expected to increase to more than 9,500 tests per day once a laboratory in Pampanga becomes operational, a health official said Wednesday.

Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said a testing facility at the Jose B. Lingad Memorial Regional Hospital in San Fernando City is expected to conduct 3,000 tests daily once it becomes operational.

“Ibig sabihin po nito na kung ang basehan natin ay ang current testing capacity of maximum of almost 6,500 tests per day, makapagsasagawa na po tayo ng almost 9,500 tests per day,” Vergeire said at a virtual press briefing.

She explained that the 19 accredited facilities nationwide are able to process a minimum of 2,895 tests and a maximum of 6,420 daily.

Earlier on Wednesday, Vergeire said it is unlikely that that country will meet its target testing capacity by the end of April. 

“Hindi pa rin po tumitigil ang pagpupursige na maabot ang ating target na 8,000 tests per day,” she assured.


The DOH earlier said that the Pampanga laboratory, a product of a partnership with the Asian Development Bank, is expected to unload backlogs from the testing centers in Metro Manila.

The Philippine Red Cross has also committed to establishing 20 more testing centers across the country. 

Vergeire said 89,021 people have been tested for COVID-19 as of Tuesday, 88.44 percent of whom tested negative while 11.39 percent were positive.

The Philippines has recorded 8,212 COVID-19 cases with 1,023 recoveries and 558 deaths as of Tuesday afternoon. -NB, GMA News