Arroyo to try alternative treatment in TagaytayBy Leila B. Salaverria
Philippine Daily Inquirer
She may be leaving the hospital, but former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s first few days as a free woman would still be occupied with getting treatment for her illnesses, according to one of her spokespersons.
The 65-year-old Arroyo, now a Pampanga representative, is scheduled to visit an alternative medicine facility in Tagaytay City Thursday, according to Raul Lambino, her spokesperson on legal matters. Lambino was with Arroyo when she received the order for her release.
Starting next week, Arroyo will return to Veterans Memorial Medical Center (VMMC) in Quezon City, her detention center for eight months, to continue her therapy sessions, Lambino said.
She will undergo therapy four times a week, he added.
Arroyo visited the chapel inside VMMC before she left the hospital.
Lambino said Arroyo’s last few moments at the hospital was emotional for her relatives, visitors and the staff who had attended to her all those months.
“The mood was happy. There were tears of joy,” he said over the phone.
Others also felt triumphant.
“We are vindicated. We hope this would be a lesson for everyone,” he said.
He said the visitors and the nurses were among those who had wept.
“It was unexpected,” he said of Arroyo’s release from detention.
And before Arroyo finally bade them goodbye, the staff members and visitors made sure to record the moment for posterity by taking pictures.
This was shortly before Arroyo and her family braved the mob of supporters and protesters waiting outside the gate to proceed to their home in La Vista, Quezon City.
The former President had asked to be detained at a medical facility because of her illnesses.
She had undergone cervical spine surgery last year to address the severe pain in her upper limbs due to nerves being compressed in the neck area.
She was also found to have hypoparathyroidism, a disorder where the parathyroid glands fail to produce enough of the hormone that helps control calcium, phosporous and Vitamin D levels in the blood and bone.
Earlier this year, she contracted shingles, which is caused by the same virus that causes chicken pox. Those who have it usually get rashes.
Arroyo earlier said having shingles felt like having “a very, very bad case of flu.”