Press Release
May 20, 2020

Gordon gets plaudits from colleagues for Red Cross leading the way in making covid testing available to the public

Senator Richard J. Gordon received plaudits from his colleagues on Tuesday for his visionary leadership in the Philippine Red Cross, which has come to the forefront of the fight against the coronavirus 2019 or COVID-19 by opening the biggest COVID testing laboratory that is now doing almost half of the tests in the country.

During the hearing of the Committee of the Whole, Senator Franklin Drilon, Minority leader, started the ball rolling by congratulating Gordon because "the Red Cross is contributing its share to nation-building, noting the lower cost of Red Cross COVID test compared to what hospitals are charging.

For his part, Senator Juan Miguel Zubiri, Majority leader, pointed out how the Philippine Red Cross, which he is proud to be a member of, is getting way ahead by ramping up on testing centers.

"Senator Gordon is trying to ramp up almost all regions as well as city centers and they've done it in such a short time. More than anything, you provided the inspiration, blood, sweat and tears to make it happen. You showed everyone, especially government that it can be done. No ifs or buts. Congratulations, you have made all of us volunteers very proud," he said.

Senator Sherwin Gatchalian, meanwhile, was awed that 45 days after Gordon discussed the idea of a Red Cross laboratory, the laboratory is already opened and doing 45 percent of the country's tests. "Ipinakita ni Sen. Gordon na KUNG GUSTO, KAYA AT KUNG MAY DETERMINASYON, kaya po. So, congratulations Sen. Gordon. I'm also a Red Cross governor so I am very proud that Red Cross is leading the way in making sure that we have ample testing for our people," he said.

Senator Ralph Recto, Senate President Pro-Tempore, also thanked Gordon for working with the Lipa city government to improve the testing capacity of Lipa City and the whole Batangas province.

"I also want to congratulate Sen. Dick Gordon. I was really monitoring the progress or the lack of progress of our testing facilities and I was so excited when I saw what he is doing. He made what seemed impossible, possible. So the Filipino thank you," Senator Pia Cayetano, meanwhile said.

For his part, Gordon put the success of the Red Cross down to the support and cooperation of all the people behind the operation, citing the Red Cross staff and volunteers, the donors, the people who helped the Red Cross raise resources and the government officials.

"The success of the Red Cross is the success of all. The hardworking people that I really ran ragged, intimidate, you know chastise and they perform marvellously. So, the Red Cross is pushing very hard. Thank the lord for giving us the vision and the energy, the drive for all our volunteers and staffs and for all those who helped us to raise the resources so that we could do it," the PRC chairman and CEO said.

"We have great cooperation from the government like I said, Vince Dizon has been spectacular of course, General Galvez has been a quiet as you say snappy general who was been doing the work. We have cooperation from the National Defense, we have chartered two PAL flights then the government allowed us to use a C130 to get our machines from China. There are a lot of other people, the Coast Guard in particular. I'd like to mention Admiral Garcia who has been doing humongous work, along with his troops... there are quite a few of them who support and this is the kind of country we have - everybody carrying the load," he added.

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