Press Release
September 4, 2020


With the opening today of its 20th molecular laboratory in Zamboanga City, the Philippine Red Cross' total daily testing capacity for COVID-19 has been increased to 40,000 tests per day.

Senator Richard J. Gordon, PRC chairman and CEO, said the facility could start operations immediately since it had been issued a license of operate by the Department of Health last August 27.

"Today, on my mother's birthday, we inaugurated PRC's 20th laboratory. Having been a Red Cross volunteer for 63 years, she would have been very happy that the Red Cross can now cater to our kababayans in Zamboanga and the nearby provinces. Sabah returnees can also be tested there," Gordon said.

The PRC chairman said the facility can cater to residents of the Zamboanga Peninsula which is consists of the three provinces of Zamboanga del Norte, Zamboanga Sibugay and Zamboanga del Sur) and the cities of Dapitan, Dipolog, Isabela, Pagadian, and the highly urbanized city of Zamboanga.

He added residents from Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-tawi can also be tested at the said molecular laboratory.

The newly-inaugurated laboratory, equipped with two polymerase chain reaction machines, is capable of running a total of 2,000 tests per day. It is located at Pettit Barracks, Zamboanga City.

Gordon commended the International Committee of the Red Cross for its donation which enabled the PRC to build the laboratory.

The PRC started its COVID testing operations by opening its first molecular laboratory, which has a total testing capacity of total of 4,000 tests a day, on April 14 at the mezzanine of its National Headquarters along EDSA. This was soon followed by another one at its Logistics and Multiple Center, just behind the National Headquarters, on April 29. Afterwards other molecular laboratories were also opened in Port Area, Manila, Clark, Subic, Batangas, Cebu, and Bacolod.

Meanwhile, the PRC's molecular laboratories in Cagayan de Oro, Surigao, Isabela, Albay, Quezon Lucena, Cotabato and Laguna are currently in different stages of completion.

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