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More senators undergo self-quarantine

/ 12:24 PM March 12, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — More senators said they will undergo self-quarantine after a resource person, who tested positive for the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), attended a hearing last week in the Senate.

Senator Francis Pangilinan told INQUIRER.net in a text message that he has been on self-quarantine since last Tuesday.

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“We have already imposed a self-quarantine since last Tues(day) as one of my staff members had been exposed to a (COVID-19) positive patient,” he said.

“My staff member thankfully tested negative but we have opted to remain indoors as an added measure,” he added.

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Senator Sonny Angara, although feeling physically okay, said he would also go into self-quarantine.

“Have sent my staff home since Monday (afternoon). I think the (Philippines) should be more proactive and look to the best practices of South Korea where they have tested a large number and measures have proven effective at lowering the number of cases,” Angara said in a text message his staff forwarded to reporters.

Senate Majority Leader Juan Juan Miguel Zubiri also said he would go into self-quarantine.

“Most of us Senators have decided to stay home and away from any events. While we await test done on Sen Sherwin and Sen Nancy. And to be safe we the senators should be all tested for COVID-19 as we were exposed yesterday to a number of people,” he told reporters in a message.

“I had been warning my colleagues on the conduct of public hearings during these times but obviously some of them did not heed my warning,” he added.

Senator Imee Marcos confirmed to INQUIRER.net that she will undergo self-quarantine as she is “often near” Senator Sherwin Gatchalian.

On March 5, Gatchalian led a public hearing on the complementary roles of public and private institutions in the Philippine educational system. He has decided to undergo self-quarantine after interacting with the Senate resource person who later tested positive for COVID-19.

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“I had no exposure to the COVID-19 patient when he went to the Senate on March 5. But I am considered a 2nd generation person in view of my exposure to Senators Win Gatchalian and Nancy Binay on March 6, 9 & 11. Therefore, I will quarantine myself voluntarily for 14 days.” –

Senator Ramon “Bong” Revilla also decided to go into voluntary quarantine.

“Sen. Gatchalian is my seatmate in the Senate. Maliban sa session noong Monday, magkasama rin kami sa aking opisina kahapon,” he said in a statement sent to reporters.

(Sen. Gatchalian is my seatmate in the Senate. Aside from Monday’s session, we were also together in my office.)

“Bilang pag-iingat, kahit na wala akong anumang sintomas, nagdesisyon po akong mag voluntary quarantine umpisa kagabi (As a precautionary measure, even though I don’t have any symptoms, I decided to undergo voluntary quarantine since last night). We don’t want to expose others to potential risk,” he added.

Senators Francis Tolentino and Lito Lapid will undergo self-quarantine as well.

Senator Nancy Binay likewise subjected herself to self-quarantine as she was also present in the said hearing.

While he had no interaction with the COVID-19 patient, Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon said was exposed to both Gatchalian and Binay.

“I had no exposure to the COVID-19 patient when he went to the Senate on March 5. But I am considered a 2nd generation person in view of my exposure to Senators Win Gatchalian and Nancy Binay on March 6, 9 & 11. Therefore, I will quarantine myself voluntarily for 14 days,” Drilon said in a statement.

The Senate has been placed under restrictive access for the disinfection of the building.

For more news about the novel coronavirus click here.
What you need to know about Coronavirus.
For more information on COVID-19, call the DOH Hotline: (02) 86517800 local 1149/1150.

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