DOH looking into so-called inconsistent COVID-19 results after Pampanga gov calls for probe

Kristine Sabillo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Aug 31 2020 07:51 PM

MANILA — The Department of Health on Monday said it is looking into reports of conflicting COVID-19 results in Pampanga as reported by the governor.

“We received the information. I think that was Saturday. And we immediately coordinated with the regional office. Tinitingnan natin ngayon kung ano ang nangyari (We are checking what happened),” Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said during a virtual briefing.

Vergeire said one or two patients were tested, and two days later, were asked to do a repeat test. But the results were different.

Last Aug, 26, Pampanga Governor Dennis Pineda asked the provinces’ Sangguniang Panlalawigan to investigate the “problem.”

He said in a video posted on social media that it is now a dilemma for them if they should hold the patients in their isolation facilities when they tested positive at a private laboratory but tested negative at a government laboratory a few days after, or vice versa.

Reports said such conflicting results involved at least a dozen people.

“So ngayon, iniimbitahan tayo ng Sangguniang Panlalawigan ng Pampanga para humarap sa kanila at maipaliwanag natin ang proseso at maibigay sa kanila ang detalye kung ano talaga ang nangyari, at what would be the analysis or recommendation for this,” Vergeire said.

(For now, we are being invited by the Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Pampanga to face them and explain the process and give details on what happened and what our analysis or recommendation for this is.)

Vergeire said the DOH already has the mandate to monitor the quality of their accredited laboratories.

“We have to ensure that the laboratories which were licensed would continue to provide quality results,” she said.

Vergeire assured the public that they take immediate action once they see “gaps” in the processing being done by the laboratories.