Two Senators Decline COVID-19 Testing Due to Limited Supply

Two senators have refused to undergo swabbing for COVID-19 even after a colleague tested positive for the virus, citing a Department of Health policy prioritizing the elderly and symptomatic patients amid a limited supply of test kits. 

Opposition senators Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan and Risa Hontiveros opted not to take the test after Senate President Vicente Sotto III’s call for all senators to be checked, even without symptoms, in the wake of Senate Majority Leader Juan Miguel Zubiri’s diagnosis. 

Hontiveros’ staff said the senator was “following health protocols… She is not displaying any symptoms.” However, she is “under self-quarantine” after Zubiri tested positive. 

Pangilinan also refused to undergo testing to “avoid wasting” test kits since he has no symptoms of the disease, the senator’s staff said in a separate statement. 

Symptomatic patients exhibit symptoms including fever, headache, cough and colds.

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