President Duterte wanted to make RT-PCR testing free.
President Rodrigo Duterte wanted Health Secretary Francisco Duque III to form a plan on how to make COVID-19 testing free for Filipinos.
It was recalled that President Duterte recently issued an order to put a price ceiling or regulation on COVID-19 RT-PCR testing because some firms was charging it too much.
Following the issuance of an executive order, the Department of Health (DOH) lauded the President’s directive in order to ensure affordable and equitable access to COVID-19 testing and test kits.
With this, Duque said that the price of COVID-19 nasal swab testing was ranging from PHP 4,500 to PHP 5,000 for private health facilities, but the price of COVID-19 nasal swab testing for government facilities was at PHP 3,800.
“Kailangan po iyong private laboratory…kasi limited ang capacity ng ating government laboratories, although we have been expanding our capacity,” Duque said.
Despite this, President Duterte preferred that Filipinos don’t really have to spend anything to test for COVID-19.
The President said that it would still be a long time before the target number of Filipinos was reached, although the government already had a plan to get the COVID-19 vaccine.
As a result, the demand for testing was only continuing.
“Tignan ko kung may pera magbigay nalang tayo and all government hospitals and health centers mabigay natin na libre, free of charge, target 2nd quarter if you can have a program review and look for the money,” the President said.
Earlier, the Department of Tourism was eyeing for having an RT-PCR test deal with the University of the Philippines – Philippine General Hospital (UP-PGH).