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Mandaue leads in turnout of tri-cities rapid test

By: Morexette Marie B. Erram - Reporter/CDN Digital | May 16,2020 - 05:58 PM
Rapid mass testing being conducted in Barangay Tisa, Cebu City on Thursday, May 7, 2020. CDN Digital photo | Gerard Vincent Francisco

Rapid mass testing being conducted in Barangay Tisa, Cebu City on Thursday, May 7, 2020. CDN Digital photo | Gerard Vincent Francisco

CEBU CITY, Philippines — Reporting a turnout rate of 99.4 percent as of May 15, Mandaue City leads in the ‘strategic, rapid community mass test’ a week since it commenced, data from the government show.

Data compiled by the Office of the Presidential Assistant for the Visayas (OPAV), which spearheaded Project Balik Buhay, showed that Mandaue City had reported a 99.4 percent turnout rate.

This means that 11, 561 of the 11,632 individuals identified as samples for the initiative have been subjected to the rapid antibody test.

Health workers employed for the program also were able to extract blood samples from 7, 732 out of the 10, 477 residents of Lapu-Lapu City. In turn, it reported a turnout rate of 73.8 percent as of May 15.

The Department of Health in Central Visayas (DOH – 7) recommended a three-day extension for the cities of Mandaue and Lapu-Lapu to complete collecting sample population for Project Balik Buhay.

Dr. Mary Jean Loreche, chief pathologist of DOH – 7, said in a live press conference of the program that the two cities were almost near in reporting a 100 percent turnout rate.

“Considering these cities are close to getting the 100 percent of their sample size, we recommend for an extension of up to three days,” said Loreche in a mix of Cebuano and English.

Sweeper

Loreche also said a ‘sweeper’ would be conducted on areas with low turnout rates if it meant collecting the desired sample population in a shorter amount of time.

“We have provided the necessary data to our local government officials so that they will know which areas needed sweeping,” she added.

Cebu City posted a turnout rate of 35 percent only as of May 15. As a result, the DOH – 7 recommended for the city to extend its rapid mass testing to May 21.

“We are also urging local government officials to further intensify their information drive in order to encourage more to undergo rapid testing,” Loreche said.

A total of 333 individuals from the tri-cities who underwent the test came out positive of antibodies indicating possible COVID-19 infection.

Three hundred fifteen (315) of these 333 are now subject for swab tests which is also the gold standard in detecting presence of SARS-CoV2, the virus strain that causes COVID-19. /dbs

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