THE Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) have clarified in their recent memorandum that there is there is a frequency in which employers may subject their workers to Covid-19 testing.
In a statement, the DTI and DOLE said, “All workers and employees in the hospitality and tourism sectors as identified and declared by the Department of Tourism (DOT) may be tested once every four weeks.” This includes employees of accommodation establishments accredited by the DOT to operate in the middle of the pandemic.
On the other hand, all workers and employees of manufacturing companies and public service providers, who are registered in economic zones located in special concern areas may be tested every three months.
Special concern areas or special economic zones are selected areas of highly developed or which have the potential to be developed into agri-industrial, industrial tourist/recreational, commercial, banking, investment and financial centers under the Philippine Economic Zone Authority.
Frontline and economic priority workers are defined as those who work in high priority sectors both public and private, have high interaction with and exposure to the public, and who live or work in special concern areas. They may also be tested every three months.
Under Section IV-14 of the Department of Health Department Memorandum 2020-0258-A, “all testing facilities shall utilize the appropriate Philhealth benefits and/or any benefit provided by health maintenance organizations or private health insurance for Covid-19 testing to reimburse the cost of testing.”
However, RT-PCR tests are not mandatory but are encouraged among companies.
Companies have started to test their employees to also build customer confidence.
In Cebu, employee testing has become an initiative to lessen the transmission of the deadly novel coronavirus that continues to threaten health, livelihood and the economy, (JOB)