Rapid test protocol all set for DCPO detainees

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DAVAO CITY — The Davao City Police Office has conducted rapid tests to all detainees in various police precincts of the city, said City Police Director Colonel Kirby John Kraft on Monday to mitigate the spread of coronavirus pandemic and to check the status of those in detention.

The activity is in coordination with the City Government of Davao and the City Health Office through Dra. Joy Villafuerte, City Health Officer. Rapid diagnostic testing (RDT) is now being observed in all police stations in Davao City as a “protocol” before the arrested person can enter the custodial facility.

This is according to PCol Kraft as the rapid result testing would provide quick real-time data that will keep other detainees incarcerated safe, as well as alert our police officers to any potential exposure.

“The rapid blood test will help us immediately identify who has been exposed to the virus, whether they have symptoms or not, so that appropriate and more aggressive measure can be taken to reduce the number of people who come in contact with the virus and decrease its transmission,” he said.

On May 7, 2020, thirty nine (39) police nurses from different police stations underwent a short training facilitated by medical staffs of the City Health Office to edify their skills on how rapid test is to be done.

These police nurses will facilitate the RDT in their respective units. Today, May 18, 2020, a total of 448 persons deprived of liberty (PDL) have been tested and all of them tested negative.

If in case a person tested is positive for RDT, coordination will be made to DOH and COVID Operation Center for a confirmatory polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing. Nevertheless, the City Director is grateful for the support of the LGU of Davao thru Hon. Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio in the materialization of this effort.

“The 1,360 kits were provided by the City Government of Davao and we are thankful that they have supported and acknowledged this initiative of ours to better protect the welfare of our detainees,” PCol Kraft emphasized.

He added that given the situation of the jail facilities, these people are very susceptible to the virus because they do not have the ability to observe the social distance. “We have been protecting the public and that includes the health and safety of our inmates,” he ended.

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