The deputy chief implementer of the National Task Force Against Covid-19 on Tuesday said mass testing, which he defined as the testing of a country’s entire population, was not a viable testing strategy.

Speaking at a Palace news conference, Vince Dizon said the government’s testing strategy was “risk-based” and “targeted.”

“Ngayon po, siguro dapat din na maipaliwanag natin nang kaunti itong mga nagiging panawagan ngayon tungkol sa mass testing na ang pagkakaintindi natin ay dapat i-test ang lahat ng 110 million Filipinos. Alam po ninyo, sa buong mundo, ang mga eksperto po ay unanimous na ang mass testing ay hindi nirerekomenda,” he said.

Dizon cited a University of California, Davis study and said that “broad scale testing beyond high priority testing makes no sense.”

“Ang importante na sinasabi ng mga eksperto kasama na rin ang mga eksperto sa Pilipinas, kailangan ang testing natin ay risk-based at very targeted,” he added.

Dizon also asserted that the stringent implementation of minimum health standards, including mask-wearing, frequent hand-washing and social distancing, was a more effective solution against Covid-19.

“We cannot test our way out of this pandemic….At ang testing ay kailangan na ang kaakibat niyan ay ang mabilis na pagti-trace at ang mabilis na isolation,” he said.

The Philippines has tallied 812,760 Covid-19 cases as of April 6. The case count is expected to reach 1 million by end-April.A total of 178,429 Covid-19 tests have been administered so far in April, of which 65,562 turned out positive. John Ezekiel J. Hirro