Researchers in Philippines are working to see the possible use of saliva as a sample for coronavirus testing. Maria Rosario Vergeire, a health department official, said Wednesday Filipino researchers were working on the “method of collecting saliva samples for almost a month now,” daily Phil Star reported.The archipelago nation Wednesday reported 4,650 new cases and 111 deaths due to the virus. The national death toll climbed to 2,795 after fresh fatalities, while the number of total infections hit 173,774. “That is being studied by our lab experts’ panel. We forwarded it to our laboratory experts’ panel to study and to look at the different experiences of countries using this method,” Vergeire said.“Our lab experts’ panel is looking into this because it will be easier if saliva is used. But the panel also discovered the process is tedious because there may be food particles in saliva. So, we are still studying many things about this,” Vergeire added. US authorities recently announced the approval for authorized emergency use of the saliva test for COVID-19.The new test, called SalivaDirect and was developed by researchers at the Yale School of Public Health, allows saliva samples to be collected in any sterile container. It is reportedly a much less invasive process than the nasal swabs currently used to screen for SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes COVID-19.In the Philippines, approved COVID-19 testing methods are the real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction or RT–PCR tests, which the DOH branded as the “gold standard” for coronavirus detection, the GeneXpert tests, Rapid Antibody rests and the Anti-Gen tests.