MOA Arena ready for use as COVID-19 swabbing facility

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Senator Richard Gordon, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, and National Action Plan Against COVID-19 Deputy Chief Implementer Sec. Vince Dizon inspected the facility on Friday, May 8. Photo by BCDA.
Senator Richard Gordon, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, and National Action Plan Against COVID-19 Deputy Chief Implementer Sec. Vince Dizon inspected the facility on Friday, May 8. Photo by BCDA.

The Mall of Asia (MOA) Arena in Pasay City is ready for use as a COVID-19 mega swabbing facility, which can test up to 1,500 people per day.

Senator Richard Gordon, who is also chairman and chief executive officer of the Philippine Red Cross, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, and National Action Plan Against COVID-19 Deputy Chief Implementer Sec. Vince Dizon inspected the facility on Friday, May 8.

Dizon is also President and CEO of the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) and Presidential Adviser for Flagship Programs and Projects.

The swabbing facility was set up in collaboration with the private sector, namely the SM Group, Ayala Group and the Razon Group.

“We are at war. The world is at war. We’re not going to get any help from anybody except ourselves kaya dapat talaga nagco-cooperate tayong lahat,” said Gordon.

The Philippine National Police (PNP) will provide the medical staff for the MOA Arena, one of the first four swabbing facilities established by the government in partnership with the private sector.

The MOA Arena has 72 testing booths, and will be managed by the PNP Medical Corps.

Dizon, also the chief coordinator of the Task Force T3 (Test, Trace, Treat), said the setting up of testing booths provides additional protection to frontliners.

“The booths are very important because this provides a physical barrier between the patient and the frontliner, and makes the frontliner less exposed and makes the risk of infection or transmission very very low so we are doing this not only for our patients but also for the frontliners,” Dizon said.

Dizon earlier said that some 25,000 overseas Filipino workers will be prioritized in the first few days of operations of the four mega swabbing centers.

The other mega swabbing centers are the Enderun Tent in Taguig City, Palacio de Maynila, and the Philippine Sports Stadium at the Philippine Arena in Bulacan. (BCDA)

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