Press Release
March 28, 2020

Dispatch from Crame No. 755:
Sen. Leila M. de Lima's Push for Mass Testing


It's stupefying to note that our health authorities seem to be downplaying, if not actually scoffing at, the idea of mass testing.

The DOH Secretary himself was quoted as saying: "Do we have to test each and every Filipino? That's 104 million. I think no country would be able to do mass testing to the extent of the population of the [Philippines]."

Of course we know that, Mr. Secretary. When we push for mass testing, we are not asking you to test each and everyone of us. That would be colossal stupidity! We are not asking for the moon.

Mass testing entails the focused and strategic targeting or identification of the segments of the populace, the sectors and communities that need immediate testing. These include the PUIs and PUMs, the elderly, the sick or sickly, those with underlying illnesses or pre-existing conditions, or the vulnerables and high-risks, particularly in high-density areas.

You prioritize them, en masse or in substantial numbers, in proportion to existing and projected capacities, then move on to cover more clusters and areas as capacities improve. Planado, desidido at aktibong pagkilos po ang ating lubhang kailangan sa ngayon.

Fast track all needed processes -- procurement of testing kits and other related equipment; immediate assessment and accreditation of available testing kits, related equipment and facilities, whether procured or donated; distribution to available facilities; and deployment of needed manpower -- to improve capacities.

Aren't all these commonsensical? My goodness!

(Access the handwritten copy of Dispatch from Crame No. 755, here:

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