Taguig begins barangay-based, drive-thru COVID-19 testing

Taguig City on Wednesday formally launched its barangay-based and drive-thru COVID-19 testing as part of its measures to contain the spread of the virus in their city.

Taguig Lino Cayetano said the projects were part of the city’s Systematic Mass Approach to Responsible Testing (SMART).

“Many experts have seen increased COVID-19 testing as an effective tool to decrease transmissions and more effectively treat those infected. We are heeding their suggestions,” Cayetano said.

SMART has tested around 1,000 residents since March. It includes COVID-19 on-call service wherein health workers collect swabs from possible patients at their homes.

Taguig LGU would also train staff in its 31 health centers and three “Super Health Centers” to facilitate COVID-19 testing in the barangays where they operate.

Meanwhile, residents who have personal vehicles may take the drive-thru coronavirus testing if they find health centers inaccessible.

Also read: DOH says Coronavirus crisis far from over, but there is improvement

Taguig begins barangay-based, drive-thru COVID-19 testing

Taguig made the service available on its temporary testing facilities set up in Bonifacio Global City in Barangay Fort Bonifacio and Taguig Lakeshore in Barangay Lower Bicutan.

“With these approaches, we are making COVID-19 testing more accessible to Taguigeños,” Cayetano said.

“In doing this, we are capturing the real breadth of COVID-19 infections in the city, normalizing testing, and taking away the stigma around the infection,” he added.

“The new skill would immensely help us in the foreseeable future where COVID-19 is a notifiable disease or a disease that should be immediately reported and managed,” he added.

Aside from testing, the Taguig city government has reorganized itself, continues the enforcement of a community quarantine, containment, contact tracing, and disinfection as part of its holistic approach in fighting the virus.

“We have strictly implemented the of the ECQ, complemented that effort with the provision of relief, other forms of assistance, and continued social services. On top of this, we have increased our capacity for treatment and quarantine. This new step is part of that holistic approach. We see mass testing as a crucial and proactive step, one that we think will benefit the city even beyond the ECQ,” Cayetano said.