The Department of Health (DOH) will start the gradual inclusion of antigen test results in the country’s daily COVID-19 case bulletin starting next week, Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said in Saturday’s Laging Handa briefing.
“Simula next week, unti-unti na nating ipapasok ‘yan [antigen test results] at magkakaroon naman po tayo ng qualifier kung ilan ang RT-PCR, at ilan ang antigen test sa mga kasong ire-report natin sa public,” Vergeire said.
(Starting next week, we will gradually include the antigen test results in our report to the public and we will have a qualifier on the number of RT-PCR and antigen tests conducted.)
However, Vergeire said that antigen test results will only be included in the official tally after DOH’s validation process.
Currently, the DOH is coordinating with the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority as well as the National Task Force against COVID-19 to establish a registration and reporting system for COVID-19 antigen tests.
But she pointed out that local government units (LGUs) should be mandated to report the COVID-19 antigen test results to the DOH.
Also, LGUs should be tasked to gather data on all the antigen tests conducted within its jurisdiction.
“Hindi dapat voluntary ang pagre-report ng resulta ng antigen test…Kaya po kami nakikipag-coordinate with the MMDA and the NTF para matulungan po tayo na mamobilize pati ang regional offices ng DILG and DOH so that we can have this registration process for clinics,” she said.
(The reporting of antigen test results should not be voluntary. Thus, we are coordinating with the MMDA and the NTF to help in the mobilization of the DILG and DOH regional offices so that we can have this registration process for clinics.
“And yung [LGUs] na gumagamit, may specific na reporting system for that na ibabahagi sa kanila so that we could make this official at maging mandato ng mga gumagamit ng antigen na maireport ito sa ating gobyerno,” she added.
(LGUs that are using the antigen tests shall have a specific reporting system that will be shared to them so that we could make this official, and the users of antigen tests will be mandated to report the results to the government.)
Earlier, the DOH said that it is investigating the decline in the number of COVID-19 tests conducted by designated laboratories.
One of the factors that they are investigating is the use of antigen COVID-19 test instead of the RT-PCR test.
On Friday, the DOH reported 18,659 new COVID-19 infections, bringing the total number of cases to 2,453,328.
Currently, the Philippines has 175,324 active cases.
Of this, 88.1% are mild, 6.9% are asymptomatic, 1.5% are severe, and 0.7% are in critical condition. —LBG, GMA News
This article Vergeire: Antigen test results to be included in COVID-19 tally was originally published in GMA News Online.Internet Explorer Channel Network