‘How Philippine presidents dealt with their medical issues’- From Marcos to Duterte
President Rodrigo Duterte’s health has been the subject of much speculation in recent months following trips to the hospital and
his recent announcement that a “growth” found in his digestive system during an endoscopy.
Officials and his allies are not keen on releasing medical bulletins despite calls by various groups for the administration to
more transparent regarding the situation of the President.
This the first occasion when that Filipinos have clamored for updates and straightforwardness in regards to the soundness of their leader.
The present organization additionally not the first to be parsimonious with regards to insights about the CEO’s condition of wellbeing.
The 1987 Philippine Constitution expresses that “if there should arise an occurrence of the genuine disease of the President,
the general population educated of the condition of his wellbeing.” The expression is quiet on what considers a “genuine ailment.”
How did Philippine presidents handle their very own wellbeing concerns?
HOW MALACAÑANG RESPONDED:
At the start of his 3rd term in 1981, rumors on Ferdinand Marcos’ deteriorating health intensified. They persisted as his public appearances grew scarce. A report from 1984 noted that the “obvious poor health” of Marcos had sparked a mad scramble among opposition members regarding his would-be successor.
WHO DISCLOSED IT:
In December 1984, more than a year after the assassination of Marcos’ chief critic Ninoy Aquino, then labor minister Blas Ope told the New York Times that “the health of our leader is undergoing certain vicissitudes, problems,” adding that he was “in control but cannot take major initiatives.”
This disclosure, the Times added, was the first on-the-record confirmation about Marcos’ poor health. Rumors heightened “when [Marcos] went into seclusion November 14 for health reasons and was not seen in public until November 26” in 1984, the Times added.
A year after, in 1985, the Los Angeles Times cited a report quoting Dr Potenciano Baccay, one of Marcos’s private physicians and an official at the National Kidney Foundation (now the National Kidney and Transplant Institute), that Marcos underwent kidney transplants in 1983 and 1985.
The Palace called the report “sheer fantasy.” Baccay was later abducted and killed by unidentified men the same month he talked to the press, according to a New York Times report.
In 1986, prior to the EDSA People Power Revolution and during a presidential campaign, the Times cited United States intelligence reports that said Marcos was “seriously ill with a cyclical, potentially fatal rare disease.”
Marcos died while in exile in Hawaii in 1989, three years after his ouster in a people power revolution in February 1986. His death was due to complications caused by kidney, lung, and heart ailments.
In 2006, then Ilocos Norte representative Imee Marcos, according to a GMA News report, said that secrecy was maintained to the point that advisers dismissed the idea of treatment abroad – to douse doubts about the dictator’s ability to lead the country.
– “Growth” found during an endoscopy
– Buerger’s Disease
– Barrett’s Esophagus
– Gastroesophageal reflux disease
– Frequent migraines and spinal issues
– Sleeps with the aid of an oxygen concentrator and has used fentanyl patches
HOW MALACAÑANG HANDLES:
The Palace has not released official medical bulletins about the health of President Rodrigo Duterte.
Much of the information about his condition comes from President himself, who would often announce what pained him during speeches.
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque (now on leave) said Duterte’s health is still covered by rules on the confidentiality of health records because the Constitution only requires disclosure in the event of “serious illness.”