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Manila opens own testing lab in Sta. Ana 

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The Sta. Ana Hospital's coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) testing laboratory opened on Thursday as the Department of Health (DOH) issued its license to operate (LTO), to increase the capability of the city of Manila for expanded testing.

Sta. Ana Hospital Director Dr. Grace Padilla went to the DOH office in Sta. Cruz, Manila to personally get the LTO for the city's own Covid-19 testing laboratory.

Padilla immediately presented the LTO to Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno" Domagoso.

“We are ready to go, may awa ang Diyos (God has mercy). In the coming days, our small efforts to strengthen our position against Covid-19 will be stronger than ever,” Domagoso said.

Earlier, Domagoso said that once the Sta. Ana Hospital Covid-19 testing laboratory obtains its license to operate, it can handle around 200 swab tests per day.

He said this is in line with the city government’s mass testing operations to fight the Covid-19 pandemic.

He said all these are part of his long-term plan for the city to fight the pandemic, adding that “the more we test, the more cases we confirm, the more we’re able to isolate and treat them”.

Aside from the testing laboratory, the Sta. Ana Hospital also operates its Manila Infectious Disease Control Center (MIDCC).

Padilla said they were able to comply with the DOH’s requirements through the assistance of the health department and of the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM).

She is also thanked Domagoso and Vice Mayor Honey Lacuna-Pangan for their unending support.

"Mahirap talaga makakuha ng (it is not easy to obtain) license to operate for Covid-19 testing laboratories, very technical and very specific ang RITM,” she said.

Dr. Arnold Pangan, acting head of the Manila Health Department, said the city now has the capability to process around 350 swab tests per day, with the help of the city’s partnership with other hospitals. 

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