House Waits For Doctors’ Advice

The doctors' recommendations, including that of Health Secretary Enrique Ona, would determine whether or not the government would give in to the proposed overseas treatment of former President and Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo due to her "disheartening and life threatening" condition that stemmed from her previous neck surgery, House leaders said yesterday.

Speaker Feliciano "Sonny" Belmonte Jr. said that they have to wait for the doctors' final word before they convince President Benigno S. Aquino III to allow Mrs. Arroyo to undergo corrective surgery abroad after experiencing "choking sensation and shortness of breath."

"That's for doctors to say what's needed, and what can be done right here. Let's see first what the doctors would tell and how serious is the condition," he said.

Occidental Mindoro Rep. Ma. Amelita Villarosa, who has been regularly visiting the ex-Chief Executive at the Veterans Memorial Medical Center (VMMC), earlier disclosed that Mrs. Arroyo is on a soup diet due to complications arising from her previous neck operation.

According to reports, it was the titanium implant that made it difficult for the former President to eat normally because it has been blocking her esophagus.

Akbayan party-list Walden Bello, who is in Europe to participate in various international fora, said he would support any recommendation that will be made by Ona as far as the renewed calls of Villarosa to allow the ex-President to seek medical attention overseas.

"I will go by recommendation of the Secretary of Health, Dr. Ona. He's the most qualified person to make the decision," the chairman of the House Committee on Overseas Workers' Affairs said in a text message.

He even proposed that foreign medical specialist should be requested to come over to examine and treat the former Chief Executive.

"I would, however, prefer a foreign medical specialist to be flown in to examine and, if the problem exists, treat her," he said.

Batangas Rep. Hermilando Mandanas also agreed with his colleagues, saying that "let CGMA go get medical treatment wherever the doctor advises, not on Rep. Villarosa's advise."

AKO Bicol party-list Rep. Rodel Batocabe said there is no reason for the President not to allow his predecessor to seek medical attention abroad.

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