Palace: Duterte negative for COVID-19 symptoms, but will still be tested
MANILA, Philippines— President Rodrigo Duterte has not shown signs and symptoms of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), Malacañang said Thursday.
Despite this, presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo said the President will still undergo testing for the virus alongside Senator Christopher “Bong” Go since they engaged with Cabinet officials who earlier announced they would place themselves under self-quarantine.
“While PRRD and Senator Go do not have the symptoms of the virus, they have opted to undergo the test to ensure that they are fit and healthy to perform their duties as government workers,” Panelo said in a statement.
“They are undertaking this pre-emptive step as per advice of health officials given that they have regularly engaged with Cabinet officials, some of whom have opted to undergo self-quarantine as they were exposed to those infected with COVID-19.”
Finance Secretary Carlos “Sonny” Dominguez and Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade earlier announced that they would place themselves under self-quarantine after interacting with an individual who tested positive for COVID-19.
Panelo said the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) will meet Thursday to tackle measures to be undertaken following the “recent disturbing development” on the virus.
The Department of Health (DOH) on Wednesday night announced the first death of a Filipino in the country due to COVID-19.
To date, the Philippines has 49 confirmed COVID-19 cases, a respiratory disease caused by the novel coronavirus that first emerged in the city of Wuhan in China’s Hubei province in late 2019.
The International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses named the novel coronavirus as SARS-CoV-2.
The virus causes mild symptoms such as fever and cough for most people but can cause serious illness such as pneumonia for others, especially immunocompromised individuals, particularly senior citizens and those with existing health problems.
Coronavirus is a family of viruses with a crown-like appearance/surface.
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