May 7, 2020
Petrobras continues its effort to protect its employees. The company has already carried out about 6,300 tests for Covid-19 among its employees, service providers and contact persons of suspected cases. Of this total, about 4 thousand were rapid tests, which detect antibodies and have been used, for example, to screen professionals before beginning activities in operational areas, mainly on platforms. Another 2,300 are RT-PCR tests, which identify genomes of the virus. This type of examination has been used in symptomatic employees working in person or at a home office, contacts (at work or at home) and in other specific situations to confirm or rule out diagnoses.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, Petrobras has acquired test kits and contracted specialized services. Even with bottlenecks in the supply of testing supplies and services, the company was one of the first companies to acquire tests for Covid-19. More than 20 thousand test kits were purchased and services from 12 laboratories in 15 states in the country were hired to make these tests feasible. Tests of the RT-PCR type, which detects the genomes of the virus and are the most reliable for diagnosing people with symptoms, began to be applied by Petrobras in late March, a week after WHO declared Pandemic. Rapid tests started to be used in April in the following situations:
A) during pre-boarding, to identify professionals suitable for work or those who needed to be sent to isolation;
B) to test health professionals in face-to-face care at units and airports;
C) at the Isaac Sabbá Refinery and the Urucu oil base, both in the state of Amazonas, due to the health situation in the region;
The company is acquiring a larger number of rapid test kits and, according to the market’s service capacity, will expand the measure to other operational units, always considering technical criteria and the evaluation of the region’s health status. Petrobras’ testing strategy, according to the company, follows the recommendations of health authorities and regulatory bodies. It is one of the measures to prevent and combat coronavirus in the company, which has already adopted the home office for all administrative activities, reduced the staff in face-to-face activities, maintaining only the adequate quantity for the safe operation of essential activities, adopted home monitoring with guidelines for isolation before boarding and shift, among other measures.