BY CARLA P. GOMEZ
Riverside Medical Center Inc. in Bacolod City, in celebration of its 66th Foundation Day, broke ground yesterday for the immediate construction of its molecular biology laboratory for COVID-19 testing.
The structure, which will form part of the hospital’s existing laboratory, is expected to be completed within 10 weeks and will cost Riverside about P17 million, Genesis Goldi Golingan, Riverside president and chief executive officer, said.
“Over the past months of battling with this unseen enemy we know as COVID-19, one thing has always stood out as a vital requirement in winning a battle, know your enemy. The only way to do this is through testing,” Golingan said in a press statement.
The RMCI laboratory for COVID-19 testing will be the fifth in Bacolod City and sixth in Negros Occidental.
The RMCI Molecular Biology Laboratory will be manned by registered medical technologists, who have completed Biosafety, Biosecurity, and RT-PCR training, Golingan said.
Riverside is building the diagnostic facility to facilitate the processing and releasing of faster RT-PCR results for patients, and to support efforts for a quick response to COVID-19 cases, he said.
This will make the hospital’s treatment even more efficient and safe for its patients, healthcare workers, and frontliners, he added.
The diagnostic facility will also cater to non-COVID-19 cases such as cancer specimens, minimizing the need for send-outs, and dependence on Manila-based tests, Golingan said.
“The war against COVID-19 is still a long way from being won, but we are getting there. The construction of the RMCI Molecular Biology Laboratory is a big step in that direction,” he said.*