Davao’s main swab center closes as 8 staff test positive with COVID-19

Jun. 17, 2021

DAVAO CITY – Davao City’s main COVID-19 swabbing center, the Santa Ana Health Center, is temporarily closed for a week as eight of its staff tested positive for coronavirus.

This was announced Wednesday by City Health Office (CHO) Acting Head Dr. Ashley Lopez during the COVID-19 Alert program over Disaster Radio. Lopez said those tested positive were the swabbers and staff members.

The testing center is forced to close down for a week to undergo disinfection and the rest of the staff will undergo quarantine.

“Di nato ibutang sa risgo ang atong staff ug swabbers. (We will not put our staff and swabbers at risk.) Imagine if they are going to be positive, tapos mu-swab sila og laing tao, tanang gi-swab ana ma-positive (and they will perform swabbing on other people, all those they swabbed may turn out positive),” Lopez said.

The Sta. Ana Health Center is the major swabbing center in the city accommodating nearly a thousand persons daily. With its temporary suspension, the testing services will be redirected to centers in Magsaysay Park and to Crocodile Park which is accomodating second and third generation contacts.

Some netizens vent their concerns with this announcement, one raised the question how they will get their test results. They complained that inquiries to the test center’s hotline or e-mail were not given replies.

Davao City continues to see a surge in COVID-19 cases since May, as the Department of Health recorded 4,022 active cases as of June 16. Hospitals and treatment centers are reportedly near full capacity and additional staff are needed.

Lopez said nearly 50% of the cases happen in workplaces, as he advised establishments to observe minimum health standards such as opening ventilation in offices or operating exhaust fans.

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