In COVID-19 saliva tests, a mode deemed as a cheaper and faster alternative in tracing the coronavirus disease, persons can spit inside a sterile vial that would be sealed and documented for results.
Senator Richard Gordon said, “You can get tested once every week because it is cheaper,” adding that it only costs around 2,000 pesos.
Administering saliva tests also does not need a specimen collector and a skilled professional to wear personal protective equipment, nor expensive collection vials with transport media. It also does not need swab kits.
Sample processing time, according to the Philippine Red Cross, is also shorter at three hours instead of the six to seven hours for swab tests.
Gordon said since saliva tests would be cheaper, this would also benefit PhilHealth, which recently incurred an outstanding debt of 651 million pesos due to testing services by the Red Cross. The PRC has so far conducted over 1.6 million COVID-19 tests.