Doctors want free RT-PCR tests for GenSan residents

John Unson - Philstar.com
Doctors want free RT-PCR tests for GenSan residents
Residents with close contact to COVID-19 patients submit themselves to antigen test at a testing center in Brgy. Concepcion Dos, Marikina City on Aug. 25, 2021.
The STAR / Walter Bollozos, file

GENERAL SANTOS CITY, Philippines — The city’s medical community wants the local government to provide local residents with free reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) tests.

Physician Fidel Peñamente, president of the Philippine Medical Association-General Santos City Chapter, said Thursday free RT-PCR tests can boost detection of local coronavirus infection cases.

The PMA-GenSan chapter’s appeal was announced by Peñamente via the media a day after local health authorities reported having recorded 191 more COVID-19 cases here.

He said the high cost of RT-PCR test --- ranging from P4,500 to P5,000 --- is one reason why residents are reluctant to undergo testing even if they have symptoms of the coronavirus infection.

"This should be offered for free by the local government. This way, we can detect and isolate more infected individuals, and prevent them from transmitting the disease,” Peñamente said.

He also recommended the expansion of anti-COVID-19 vaccination roll outs in General Santos City. 

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