Palace to high-ranking gov’t officials: Protocols on patients under probe, being monitored for COVID-19 must be strictly followed

(Eagle News) — The Palace on Thursday, March 26, reminded high-ranking government officials to follow the quarantine guidelines set by the Department of Health in order to curb the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019.

“The protocols set by the government for persons under investigation or monitoring must be strictly and absolutely observed by all people falling under the said categories, regardless of their socio-political status…Those holding high positions in the government are enjoined to set an example to their constituents by strictly observing them,” he said.

The DOH has said patients being probed and being monitored for the virus should stay at home.

Panelo issued the statement after Senator Koko Pimentel came under fire after admitting he had accompanied his pregnant wife to the Makati Medical Center, even after exhibiting symptoms of the disease.

He has since apologized.

Earlier, Rep. Eric Yap also attended a meeting in Malacañang on March 21 to discuss a proposed measure that sought to grant additional powers to President Rodrigo Duterte so he could address the COVID-19 emergency despite exhibiting symptoms.

The lawmaker also made an appearance in the special session of Congress on Monday, March 23, where the measure was approved.

The Presidential Security Group has said it was mulling filing charges against Yap for breaching COVID-19 protocols in the Palace, saying he did not fill out a required form that would have specified he had exposure to known COVID-19 cases.

“(The protocols) are not meant to discomfort or burden anyone. They have been established to ensure that public health and safety are secured at all times,” Panelo said.