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The government already has a budget of 295.7 million Pence approved to expand operations at the Philippine Genome Center (PGC) in Visayas and Mindanao, the Department of Health (DOH) said. With that development, the DOH said it “is now closer to the country’s bio-monitoring capacity “.

DOH Secretary Francisco Duque III said on Friday, August 27th, that the whole genome sequencing for the country’s COVID-19 response was vo n is of crucial importance.

“We will continue to support the UP-PGC in every possible way. Furthermore, we could not have done this without the help of the DBM (Department of Budget and Management) who kindly put this budget at our disposal, “he said in a statement.

” By strengthening the country’s bio-monitoring capacity let’s hope to prevent future disease outbreaks in the Philippines, “he added.

PGC said it could sequence 750 COVID-19 positive samples in a week to determine the variants of concern. “However, logistical constraints pose a challenge for the regions to send their samples to Manila regularly,” said the DOH.

“The availability of high-tech equipment and tools for all genome sequencing in Visayas and Mindanao is critical for the current COVID- 19 response from regions and beneficial for monitoring other diseases, “it said.

The DOH said whole genome sequencing is important as it is used to detect the presence of new variants in the country, if the variants in certain areas cause the peaks in certain areas and if there are already local transmissions of the variants.

“In addition to the detection of COVID-19 variants, genomic bio-surveillance plays a major role in determining the causes of outbreaks , tracking the transmission of a virus and complementing disease surveillance to the general public health response also about the To steer out the COVID-19 pandemic, “it said.

Ref: https://mb.com.ph