June 7, 2023

The Benguet General Hospital molecular testing laboratory will resume operation next week following regular maintenance and after some personnel managing the center have contracted the Covid-19 virus.

Gov. Melchor Diclas said specimens collected from BeGH, district hospitals and rural health units in the provinces were brought to the Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center while the BeGH molecular laboratory center is non-operational.

Since its operation in February this year, the laboratory has been processing 90 specimens a day.

“The personnel are now doing fine. The machine has also been recalibrated,” Diclas said.

The BeGH molecular laboratory has one reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction machine along with the automated extraction machine.

Specimens from inpatients of the hospital are prioritized in the testing followed by specimens collected from other hospitals and RHUs.

There are also other private hospitals that run their tests at BeGH, such as the Cordillera Hospital of the Divine Grace in La Trinidad.

Diclas said they are waiting for an additional RT-PCR machine as well as 30,000 PCR test kits from the Department of Health to help them expand the operation of the BeGH molecular laboratory.

The DOH has also committed P5 million for the maintenance and procurement of supplies for the laboratory.

The testing laboratory currently has 10 staff members led by Dr. Bernadette Baldo and Dr. Jennifer Binayan, who underwent training under the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine.    

Meanwhile, La Trinidad Mayor Romeo Salda reminded compliance to wearing of face mask and shield, which the police and other authorized personnel will strictly monitor.

Those who violate the minimum health protocols will be fined P500 for first offense, P1,500 for second offense, and P2,500 for the third offense based on the recently passed ordinance of La Trinidad. – Ofelia C. Empian