List of Philippine public figures who underwent COVID-19 testing
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The following is a list of Philippine public figures, along with their immediate family members and staff, who were tested for the coronavirus disease 2019 and publicly disclosed it.
Scarcity of tests
The Philippine government did not have the capacity to test for the SARS-CoV-2 virus until January 30, 2020, when the government-run Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) was finally able to run confirmatory tests. Until that date, samples from suspected COVID-19 cases had to be sent to Victorian Infectious Diseases Reference Laboratory in Melbourne, Australia for testing.
However, there were still very few testing kits in the Philippines, and the RITM was still the only laboratory that had the ability to process test results. By March 9, 2020, only 200 to 250 tests could be processed per day.
By March 23, the number had gone up to almost 1000 a day, as new laboratories gained the capacity to process test results and various entities donated about 100,000 test kits to the RITM. But the Philippines' overall capacity to do COVID-19 testing was still very limited given the national spread of the disease.
Philippine triage decision guidelines
As soon as the government gained the ability to conduct COVID-19 tests locally, they developed a triage algorithm which would serve as a "decision tool." This would determine which patients would be allowed to use the few available test kits, and the processing time of the few Philippine laboratories capable of doing COVID-19 tests.
The algorithm sorted people into "Persons Under Investigation" (PUI), who would be given tests; and "Persons Under Monitoring" (PUM), who would not be tested, but rather told to go into a 14-day self quarantine.
Prioritized testing of government officials
While some VIPs were legitimately on the priority list for testing, some of them who were not PUIs did not follow the medical protocol outlined by Department of Health's triage algorithm and were tested ahead of the symptomatic people who were in the priority list, hence the VIP treatment controversy. This included family members and the staff of current and former government officials.
The DOH later issued a statement saying that these tests were a 'courtesy' rather than 'VIP treatment' saying that "there is no policy for VIP treatment and that all specimens are being processed on a first-in, first-out basis with courtesy accorded to officials holding positions of national security and public health.”
This bypassing of the testing protocol of supposed VIPs has resulted in public outcry, given the scarcity of COVID-19 testing kits available to the public. In March 22, 2020, the hastags #NoToVIPTesting as well as #CheckYourPrivilege was trending on Twitter, reflecting public anger on the issue.
Some politicians issued apologies for getting tested, acknowledging that they “may have skipped” the protocols set by the DOH for determining which patients needed to get tested first.
List of tested public figures
The following is a list of public officials who underwent COVID-19 testing.
- President Rodrigo Duterte – negative
- Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea – negative
- Health Secretary Francisco Duque – negative
- Tested after a director at his department was confirmed to have contracted COVID-19. Duque is asthmatic and hypertensive.
- Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo Año – positive
- Budget Secretary Wendel Avisado – negative
- Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade – negative
- Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez – negative
- Public Works Secretary Mark Villar – negative
- Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana – negative
- Chief of Staff of the AFP Felimon Santos - positive
- Metropolitan Manila Development Authority General Manager Jojo Garcia – positive
- Director General of the Philippine National Police Archie Gamboa – negative
- Asymptomatic, acknowledged bypassing the DOH's protocol and triage testing algorithm, apologized to public.
- Rebecca Ynares (Rizal) – positive
- Leopoldo Bataoil (Lingayen, Pangasinan) – negative. Had persistent cough and was exposed to the Filipina who tested positive in Australia.
- Philip Crispino (Caba, La Union) – positive
- Ferdie Estrella (Baliuag, Bulacan) – positive
- Joric Garula (Taytay, Rizal) – positive
- Isko Moreno (Manila City) – negative
- Francis Zamora (San Juan, Metro Manila) – negative
The Senate held a hearing concerning the Committee on Basic Education, Arts and Culture on March 5, 2020 where a resource person later tested positive for COVID-19.
- Sonny Angara - positive.
- Nancy Binay – negative
- Pia Cayetano – TBA
- Franklin Drilon – negative. Wife also negative.
- Sherwin Gatchalian – negative
- Bong Go – negative
- Dick Gordon – TBA
- Panfilo Lacson – negative
- Imee Marcos – TBA
- Manny Pacquiao – negative 
- He said he received a rapid testing kit from friends from South Korea, though not approved by the Food and Drug Administration.
- Koko Pimentel - positive.
- Despite being symptomatic since March 14, he still accompanied his pregnant wife to Makati Medical Center, breaching the quarantine protocol, and possibly infecting the already overstretched medical professionals there.
- Grace Poe – TBA
- Bong Revilla – TBA
- Tito Sotto – tested twice. 1st test negative. 2nd test TBA
- Sotto said that the first test was made using a kit not accredited by the DOH. He subsequently took a second test, this time using a DOH-accredited kit after he began exhibitng dry cough and sore throat. Stated that he was willing to take a 3rd test after exposure to Rep. Eric Go Yap.
- Said that his testing kit did not come from the DOH. Took the test believing he has been exposed to a person who tested positive for COVID-19 and began exhibiting symptoms.
- The first national-level elected official to test positive in the Philippines. Tested despite being asymptomatic. Suspected to be a false positive by Health Secretary Duque who would have Zubiri tested again if not for the limited stock of testing kits.
House of Representatives
- Paolo Duterte – TBA
- Henry R. Villarica - positive
- Virgilio Lacson - negative
- Eric Go Yap – negative
- On March 27, the RITM reached out and apologized to Yap, informing him that he actually tested negative and correcting the initial positive result as brought by an "encoding error".
- Donna Crispino (Caba, La Union) – positive
- Vicente Ryan “Enteng ” Malapitan (Caloocan) – positive
- Chief Justice Diosdado Peralta – negative
- Had history of travelling to the Netherlands in early March 2020 and exhibited symptoms.
Former government officials
- Tested along with wife Liza and entire staff with negative results in a single day according to wife's March 26, 2020 statement via The Philippine Star, but still awaited results.
- Noted to have a recent travel history to Spain.
- Former First Lady and Ilocos congresswoman and governor Imelda Marcos – TBA
- Former special envoy to China Ramon Tulfo – negative
- Former Finance Secretary and Prime Minister Cesar Virata – positive
Family members of Philippine government officials
The following is a list of individuals who were given COVID-19 testing at the same time as their relatives who were either government officials or former government officials.
Relatives of President Rodrigo Duterte
- On March 17, according to Senator Go, their swab tests were conducted in Davao City.
Relatives and staff of Former Senator Bongbong Marcos
- Liza Marcos (wife) – negative
- Staff members of the Bongbong and Liza Marcos – negative
Relatives of Senator Koko Pimentel
- Kathryn Pimentel (wife) – TBA
Relatives of Senator Miguel Zubiri
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- COVID-19 testing
- Impact of the 2019–20 coronavirus pandemic on politics
- 2020 coronavirus pandemic in the Philippines
- 2019–20 coronavirus pandemic
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- "Bongbong Marcos' family, staff take COVID-19 tests which turn out negative". The Philippine Star. March 26, 2020.
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- "Lingayen mayor tests negative for coronavirus". ABS-CBN News. March 10, 2020.
- Ilao, Micaella (March 21, 2020). "La Union town mayor, councilor positive for COVID-19". ABS-CBN News.
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- News, Kristine Sabillo, ABS-CBN. "San Juan mayor tests negative for COVID-19". ABS-CBN News. Retrieved 2020-04-02.
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- "Sonny Angara says sick with COVID-19". ABS-CBN News. 2020-03-26.
- Domingo, Katrina (March 17, 2020). "Binay, Gatchalian test negative for coronavirus". ABS-CBN News.
- Luna, Franco. "Tolentino tests negative for COVID-19 despite DOH guideline not to test if asymptomatic". Philippine Star. Archived from the original on March 22, 2020. Unknown parameter
- Terrazola, Vanne Elaine (March 17, 2020). "Six more senators undergo COVID-19 test". Manila Bulletin.
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- "Quarantined Pacquiao says negative for coronavirus after rapid test". ABS-CBN News. 2020-03-28.
- "Koko Pimentel tests positive for COVID-19". GMA News Online. Retrieved 2020-03-25.
- "TIMELINE: Koko Pimentel's COVID-19 crisis". ABS-CBN News. 2020-03-26.
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- News, Katrina Domingo, ABS-CBN. "Senator Pimentel tests positive for COVID-19". ABS-CBN News. Retrieved 2020-03-25.
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- "'Homebody' Koko Pimentel denies he violated coronavirus self-quarantine". ABS-CBN News. 2020-03-26.
- Tan, Lara (23 March 2020). "VIP treatment? Senators clarify their use of COVID-19 test kits amid backlash". CNN Philippines. Retrieved 23 March 2020.
- "Sotto willing to take another COVID-19 test after exposure to Rep. Yap". ABS-CBN News. March 26, 2020.
- Rosario, Ben (2020-03-27). "Bulacan solon is third bar topnotcher to test positive for COVID-19". The Manila Bulletin.
- Yap, DJ (2020-03-28). "Oops! Lawmaker actually tested negative; AFP chief positive". The Philippine Daily Inquirer.
- "Manila Teachers party-list solon tests negative for COVID-19". GMA News. 2020-03-27.
- "'Clerical oversight': RITM says congressman Yap 'remains negative' for COVID-19". Rappler. 2020-03-27.
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- Luna, Franco (March 25, 2020). "Rep. Eric Go Yap tests positive for COVID-19". Philippine Star.
- Cabalza, Dexter; Adonis, Meg (April 1, 2020). "Mayor's son, 5 cops positive for COVID-19". The Philippine Daily Inquirer.
- "CJ Peralta Tests Negative of COVID-19". Supreme Court of the Philippines. Retrieved March 20, 2020.
- Tupas, Emmanuel. "Año, Bongbong, Virata test positive". philstar.com. Retrieved 2020-04-02.
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- Garcia, Ma. Angelica (March 26, 2010). "Statement allegedly from Bongbong Marcos' wife says they got COVID-19 test results in a day". GMA News Online.
- Tulfo, Ramon (March 22, 2020). "I tested negative for Covid-19". Twitter. Retrieved March 22, 2020.
- Tulfo, Ramon. "I tested negative for the deadly Covid-19". Facebook. Retrieved March 22, 2020.
- Romero, Paolo. "Angara, Pimentel hospitalized for COVID". philstar.com. Retrieved 2020-04-02.
- Magsino, Dona (March 17, 2020). "Zubiri's wife tests negative for COVID-19".
- Philippine Government's Online Portal for the COVID-19 Pandemic.
- Updates on Novel Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) by the Department of Health, Situation tracker, updated daily.
- COVID-19 cases tracker by the Philippines' Department of Health
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