The RITM National Tuberculosis Reference Laboratory (NTRL) celebrated its 20th founding anniversary with a Thanksgiving Mass held on 01 April 2022.
Established on the 20th of March 2002, NTRL has spent the last two decades protecting Filipinos against TB through the conduct of globally competitive research, training, and diagnostic services.
“We have had many achievements in the past 20 years…pero hindi pa tapos ang laban, marami pa tayong kailangang trabahuhin para sa ating mga pasyenteng may TB,” said Head of NTRL, Dr. Ramon Basilio as he commended each and every member of the Department and called for their continued commitment to ending TB.
NTRL performs the confirmatory testing for tuberculosis and currently houses the first Biosafety Level 3 TB laboratory in the country. NTRL also provides technical assistance to the Department of Health and performs kit evaluation.
In line with the efforts to expand the TB diagnostic capacity of the country, NTRL conducts external quality assessment for other laboratories and provides quality culture media to other TB laboratories nationwide. Its trainings on TB are recognized learning programs within the ASEAN region and are given credit units by the country’s Professional Regulation Commission
“Two years ago during the start of the pandemic, I remember we had a meeting regarding the COVID-19 response. I took a picture kung sinu-sino yung mga nandoon and most of you are still here. Lahat kayo na nandoon, no questions asked nag-schedule na kayo ng duty kung sino yung magre-receiving at magtatao dahil magre-receive na tayo ng specimens for COVID. No questions asked. Dito natin nakikita the quality of the people that we have here at the NTRL family and the environment that we foster,” said Dr. Basilio.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, NTRL served as one of the three COVID-19 testing streams of the Institute, performing more than 1,500 tests daily and increasing the overall testing capacity of RITM.
“We at LRD, are thankful for those that are here now and what you will be doing in the future, we are here to support you.Thank you for helping out in the COVID-19 response. Maganda yung culture dito sa NTRL and it is a model for other departments to follow and emulate. You are an asset to RITM,” said Laboratory Research Division Chief, Dr. Amado Tandoc congratulating the lab on its anniversary.
by Reina Manongsong, Communication and Engagement Office