BACOLOD CITY, Oct. 31 (PIA) -- The National Task Force (NTF) Against COVID-19, through the Coordinated Operations to Defeat the Epidemic (CODE) Team, is sending 10,000 Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) and 8,000 Reverse Transcription-Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) test kits to Bacolod City and Negros Occidental.
NTF Against COVID-19 Deputy Chief Implementer and Testing Czar Secretary Vivencio "Vince" Dizon of the CODE Team visited Bacolod City and Negros Occidental, where he met with local officials led by Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson and Bacolod City Mayor Evelio Leonardia for the COVID-19 situation updates here as well as turn over off site dormitories for medical workers and isolation facilities.
"What we have seen in Cebu, in Negros Occidental, Bacolod and what we are seeing now in Metro Manila shows that the Prevent Detect Isolate and Re-integrate strategy works. If we are able to convince every citizen to have to wear their mask, to wash their hands and to keep distance and avoid crowded places, that in itself according to experts, 85 percent of COVID-transmission can be prevented," Dizon said during the CODE Team meeting here.
He disclosed that the National Inter Agency Task Force approved the use of antigen tests on areas where there is an upsurge in cases for those who exhibit symptoms based on contact tracing surveillance.
According to Dizon, since there will be a minimum number of antigen tests, areas will be prioritized but assured that Bacolod and Negros Occidental will have a share of the antigen tests.
"RT-PCR is still the gold standard, but the antigen is also accurate, it is like a swab test and detects current infection which is important to us so we can act quickly because the main advantage of the antigen test is the speed of the result. You will get the result in 15 minutes unlike RT-PCR, where you get it the fastest in one day," Dizon explained.
Dizon also told officials gathered in the meeting not to let their guards down this, despite the cases going down.
"The most critical factor is that when the stakeholders of an area do not work together it is really impossible to address COVID. But, if we all work together, then we can do anything.," he said.
He added "That is what Cebu and now Bacolod and Negros Occidental have shown. I just want to congratulate the leadership of both Bacolod City Mayor Evelio Leonardia and Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson, because without your leadership I don't think we will have this kind of result." *(LTP/EAD-PIA6 Negros Occidental)