Valenzuela Ramps Up Serology Testing

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Industrial workers in Valenzuela City will undergo serology testing for the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) after the local government partnered with various businesses to test their workforce using the city’s serology testing machines.

Mayor Rex Gatchalian said testing intervention is part of the local government’s efforts to help industrial establishments hard-hit by the pandemic sustain their operations.

“We will give them a complete antibody profile of their workforce that can be used for safe and sustainable continuity of their operations,” Gatchalian said on Wednesday.

As part of the city’s pandemic response, Gatchalian said the serology testing could provide faster and accurate results and is much cheaper than swab testing.

“This is important so that you can pretty much schedule your workforce properly, you can identify which set of employees can work from home and which employees are more vulnerable,” he added.

Serology testing seeks to determine appropriate medical interventions, which include isolation and treatment procedures.

The local government said it has started to test city hall employees and front-liners.

According to the city government, serology is a type of blood testing that detects signs of previous Covid-19 infections.

It also checks the presence of antibodies with the use of two Abbott ARCHITECT i1000SR, such as Immunoglobulin G (IgG) and Immunoglobulin M (IgM) machine-based antibody tests, which determines if someone was infected with the virus and if the person has developed antibodies causing a virus.

Immunoglobulin M (lgM) are antibodies that act as the first line of defense, which appear within several days of infection.

Meanwhile, Immunoglobulin G (lgG) antibodies develop later as the body cleans up the infection.

The antibody is a protein that the body produces in the late stages of infection and may remain for months and possibly years after a person has recovered.

Detecting these IgG antibodies will help determine if a person was previously infected with the virus that causes Covid-19.

The serology test can yield four possible combinations, according to the city government.

A negative IgM and negative IgG result means there is no ongoing infection and post-infection antibodies found in the patient and there is no further test is required.

While the positive IgM and positive IgG or positive IgM and negative IgG result mean that the patient will have to undergo a real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test and also confer with the City Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit (CESU) for further review.

The local government said maximizing the usage of the machine-based serology test captures a clearer picture of the city’s infection rate while performing the health efforts on immune surveillance and quarantine restrictions.

The city government is targeting to test at least 10 percent of its population by the end of this year. (PNA)

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