MANILA, Philippines -- Following the success of Go Negosyo's Pooled Swab Testing that has catered to more than eight cities and municipalities around the country with around 16,000 total swabs done, as of the latest, Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship and Go Negosyo founder Joey Concepcion said Tuesday that the research on Saliva-based PCR Testing has now been given the go signal by the Philippine Children's Medical Center (PCMC).
Dr. Raymundo Lo, head of PCMC COVID-19 Testing Laboratory, said that if the research yields positive results, it would be forwarded to the Department of Health for approval and implementation.
"We are pleased to announce that our study on the use of saliva as specimen for SEA-CoV-2 antigen and RT-PCR has been approved by the PCMC Institutional Review and Ethics Board. It paves the way for a faster, more economical, and safer method of testing if proven. We invite all who will avail of regular RT-PCR testing at PCMC to participate in the study for us to move forward in re-opening our economy with proper safety measures," Dr. Lo announced.
"After this go signal from PCMC, what we would be expecting is the final report from the research team of Dr. Lo. If the research would bear substantial results, we would forward it to DOH and seek their approval for greater coverage and dissemination. DOH approval would mean that all hospitals and testing centers that have been conducting swab-based PCR testing would be trained and allowed to conduct saliva-based PCR testing," Concepcion said.
Go Negosyo has been at the forefront of testing and testing innovations from the Rapid Antibody Test kits, to the Pooled PCR testing, and now, with the Saliva-based Testing and Saliva-based Pooled PCR Testing. The same team that produced the study on Swab-based Pooled Testing, the Saliva-based Testing and Saliva-based Pooled Testing is being studied by the Philippine Society of Pathologist Incorporated (PSPI), Research Institute of Tropical Medicine (RITM), and the PCMC headed by Dr. Lo. Private sector partners, through Go Negosyo, supported and funded these researches.
The success and wider coverage that Concepcion hopes for the saliva-based testing and saliva-based pooled testing will offer a testing method that is cheaper, more convenient, and cost-effective, in general.
"The saliva-based method is more convenient and ideal as it is painless, and no swabbers would be needed to extract samples. This method saves more time, effort, and money," Dr. Lo explained.
"Testing is a great supplement while we are awaiting the vaccine, our nuclear warhead for this war against COVID-19. Like what I usually say, utilize the weapon available to us, and our efforts on testing would serve as our machine guns for this war---our way to hold the enemy while we are waiting for the arrival of our nuclear warhead. We will soon see this pandemic end and I can assure everyone that we are doing our best efforts so that no Filipino will be left behind," Concepcion added.