Davao City, Philippines – June 4, 2020. Davao City is set to increase its daily testing capacity for COVID-19 by 1,000 tests with the help of medical equipment being donated to the Southern Philippines Medical Center (SPMC) today.
An automated RNA Extraction machine and 2 RT-PCR machines and their accessories were received by officials of the SPMC Davao in a handover ceremony this morning led by Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte–Carpio. This donation will help boost Davao City’s COVID-19 testing capacity by a maximum of 1,000 tests per day.
“The people of Davao City and the entire Mindanao are truly grateful for this generous assistance from Ayala Foundation. Know that this donation will help us with our offense. Noon, we were scrambling to defend our areas, but now we are on the offensive against COVID-19 and these donations will greatly help us in our work,” said Duterte–Carpio.
The donation is an expression of the Ayala group’s continuing commitment to helping contain the COVID-19 pandemic, as it participates in Task Force T3 (Test, Trace, and Treat) convened by the Inter-Agency Task Force–National Task Force (IATF-NTF) and the Department of Health (DOH).
The SPMC donation is one of other similar initiatives that seek to capacitate existing testing facilities and build testing laboratories in different parts of the country. Ayala, through Ayala Land and AC Health, are constructing testing labs in Bulacan, Batangas, Laguna, and Iloilo.
Together, the Ayala group’s various contributions to Project T3 will boost the country’s daily testing capacity by 5,500. At present, the country conducts about 34,000 tests daily.
“We welcome the testing laboratories from Ayala, as these will be a big help to our efforts to stamp out COVID-19 in the country, and improve the country’s health situation in general,” said Gen. Carlito Galvez Jr., chief implementer of the IATF National Action Plan Against COVID-19.
“We recognize that the private sector plays an important role in our shared fight against COVID-19, and Ayala’s donation of testing equipment and laboratories are a welcome contribution,” said Vince Dizon, deputy chief implementer of the IATF National Action Plan Against COVID-19.
Since the start of the pandemic, the Ayala group has mobilized resources in support of national efforts through the provision of equipment and protective gear for medical and community front-liners, as well as food and other basic necessities for families in different communities nationwide.
Together with partners from the business community, PDRF and Caritas Manila, Ayala took an active part in Project Ugnayan, which provided grocery vouchers for nearly 7 million individuals or 1.5 million families in Greater Manila Area’s poor communities.
Ayala also helped convert the World Trade Center into the 500-bed We Heal As One Center for COVID-19 patients. The group also helped build the testing facilities of Philippine Red Cross.
Through Ayala Foundation, the Ayala group’s 50,000-plus employees initiated Project Pananagutan, which supports “no work, no pay” employees of partner companies, front-line health workers in need of protective personal equipment, and families in need of food and other basic needs.
The Ayala group has also been working closely with the SPMC in the past few years. In 2018, Ayala donated laser eye equipment for the treatment of cancer patients at the SPMC Cancer Institute. Last December, the Ayala group officially turned over the newly refurbished House of Hope Halfway House, where pediatric patients of the SPMC Cancer Institute can stay with their families or caregivers, while they are undergoing treatment.