BARMM’s COVID-19 testing facility up for accreditation

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COTABATO CITY — The Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao’s (BARMM) laboratory facility for Covid-19 testing, through the Cotabato Regional and Medical Center (CRMC), is now on its stage 3 of the accreditation process.

In a press statement released on Thursday, May 7, BARMM information office quoted Health Minister Dr. Saffrullah Dipatuansaying “Nasa stage 3 na sila [CRMC] kung saan undergoing ng training ‘yung mga tauhan nila na magpapatakbo ng testing facility na to” [The CRMC is now on stage 3, wherein their personnel who will man the Covid-19 testing facility are undergoing training].

Dipatuan said laboratories for Covid-19 testing must undergo a 5-stage process of accreditation in order to implement full-scale testing.


He recalled that when the Bangsamoro Government signed a memorandum of agreement (MOA) with the CRMC, “nasa stage 2 po sila doon sa kanilang application for accreditation sa Department of Health (DOH)” [CRMC was already on the second stage on their application for accreditation in the DOH].

Under the said memorandum, the Bangsamoro Government has allotted over P14-million worth of funds to CRMC for the procurement of medical and laboratory supplies to carry out testing for Covid-19. 

The MOA also states that the CRMC will utilize the fund for the improvement or renovation of its laboratory, salary of contractual laboratory personnel, training of personnel, and other maintenance and other operating expenses.

Dipatuan said the CRMC is still waiting for the medical and laboratory equipment that was already purchased. “Kapag na-setup na ‘yung mga kagamitan, ang susunod jan ay stage 4” [As soon as the equipment is ready, stage 4 will follow].

The Minister said that at the 4th stage, the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) will send specimen samples to the CRMC for testing to verify the latter’s accuracy level. 

In the fifth and final stage, when the results of the samples are confirmed to be accurate, the CRMC laboratory will be officially certified.

“Pinapanalangin natin na within this month of May ay operational na po yung Covid-19 sub-national lab testing natin,” [We pray that our Covid-19 sub-national lab testing will be operational within the month of May.] he said. -BPI/BARMM

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