Press Release/14 July 2020
The Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) spearheaded by Health Secretary Francisco T. Duque III turned over 2,000 PCR test kits, 150 hygiene kits, and 10,000 personal protective equipment to the City Government of Taguig as it expanded its Systematic Mass Approach to Responsible Testing (SMART) Program.
Taguig City’s SMART Program provides multiple testing touchpoints such as home testing conducted by a team from the City Epidemiology and Disease Surveillance Unit (CEDSU), testing in accredited facilities and laboratories in the city, and drive-thru testing. The PCR test kits from the national government allow the local government unit to conduct an additional 48,000 tests.
The Health Chief commended the City Government of Taguig for launching the SMART Program, which brings to life the national government-enabled and local government-led people-centered response against COVID-19.
“We consider the City’s aggressive tracing, testing, isolation, and partnerships as best practices worth emulating.” Secretary Duque said. IATF through the DILG has committed to guide and support LGUs in scaling up best practices.
In response, Taguig City Mayor Lino Cayetano thanked the DOH, IATF and the National Government for its support.
“Maraming maraming salamat po dahil mula noong simula ay hindi ninyo kami binitawan, patuloy ninyo kaming ginagabayan. Kami po ay nagko-commit dun sa isang direksyon po natin kasama ang National Government. Maraming salamat po!” Mayor Cayetano emphasized.
Aside from Taguig City, the IATF-EID contingent also visited Malabon, Makati, Manila and Navotas City to inspect their respective efforts in line with the government’s whole-of-systems, whole-of-government, and whole-of-society response to address the COVID-19 pandemic.