RAZON-LED firms International Container Terminal Services, Inc. (ICTSI) and Bloomberry Resorts Corp.’s Solaire Resort & Casino said they have started testing their employees for the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

“Complementing the Philippine government’s thrust to help curb the spread of the coronavirus disease, ICTSI and Solaire partnered with the Tropical Disease Foundation (TDF) and Ayala Healthcare Holdings, Inc. (AC Health) to screen employees for the COVID-19 virus, both for those who have been working from home and for those who have been working at the very front lines to help keep the economy moving,” ICTSI said in a news release.

In an e-mailed reply to a question, ICTSI told BusinessWorld that the mass testing initially involves “about 2,500 employees.”

Enrique K. Razon Jr., chairman of ICTSI and Bloomberry, was quoted as saying in the news release: “Our employees are our number one asset. As we try to overcome this most difficult phase and [as we move] into the ‘new normal’, we do so without letting our guard down. Consistent with our aim of helping the country’s health infrastructure in tackling the extent of the pandemic, our decision to invest in mass testing will give us, our employees, and their loved ones the reassurance that they will have a safe working environment, which ICTSI and Solaire are well-known for.”

ICTSI said the Bloomberry Cultural Foundation, Inc. (BCFI) recently bought 100,000 test kits from China and South Korea approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to help the government in its battle against the COVID-19 pandemic.

It said the foundation had also donated P60 million worth of personal protective equipment (PPE) and N95 masks to the Department of Health. — Arjay L. Balinbin