A Senate bill calls for the creation of a PHL virology institute to combat the spread of the virus

SEN. Robinhood “Robin” C. Padilla has filed a bill calling for the establishment of a Philippine Institute of Virology (PIV) to ensure a long-term solution against threats from various viruses such as the coronavirus and its variants.

In Senate Bill 1363, Padilla envisions the Institute of Virology to conduct research and develop cures for diseases caused by viruses in humans, animals, and plants.

“The establishment of a research and development institute under the Department of Science and Technology is a priority program to undertake diagnostics, therapies and vaccines, among others. It will engage the services of Balik scientists and foreign experts who will work with our local scientists and experts,” he said in his bill.

Padilla added that the virology institute will coordinate with relevant government agencies and with the university to address threats from the virus.

Under the bill, the PIV will lead the formulation of a national virology research agenda, which is part of the unified national research agenda, to conduct research into the effects of viruses on humans, animals and plants. .

The bill will also promote virology research ethics, biosafety and biosecurity; and strengthen scientific and technological capacities in virology and related disciplines. The VIP will also coordinate with scientists and experts from other countries.

In the meantime, a Virology Research Fund exempt from donor tax is established.

In addition, the bill provides for the PIV to be implemented in the New Clark Economic Zone in Tarlac.

“Through this institute, we will ensure that government and society as a whole stand together against the threats and impacts of health crises,” Padilla said.

Norman D. Briggs