DILG chief Año heeds doctor advice to 'take a break' after COVID-19 bouts


Posted at Jan 11 2021 05:41 PM

Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo Año speaks to members of the press in Makati City on March 10, 2020. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News/File

MANILA — Interior Secretary Eduardo Año is heeding the advice of doctors to "take a break" after his twin fights with COVID-19 and has assigned an officer in charge for his agency this month, his colleague said on Monday.

Año caught and recovered from COVID-19 twice last year. Even so, he "has not taken a single day of leave; always working even during Sundays, holidays and even at night," said Interior Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya.

Last week, Año underwent a regular medical check-up "as part of his post-COVID recovery plan," he said.

"As a COVID survivor, he has been advised by his doctors to slow down and take a break from stressful activities. His doctors advised him to pace himself, to get plenty of rest, to prioritize his health and to further undergo some tests," Malaya told ABS-CBN News.

"Hence, he has designated Usec Bernardo Florece to serve as Officer-in-Charge of the DILG until the end of the month."

Año was hospitalized for 11 days over his second bout with COVID-19, he said last September.

"Medyo nahirapan ako dito sa pangalawa dahil madaming symptoms at sabay-sabay," he told ABS-CBN's TeleRadyo.

(I found this second bout a bit hard because there were many symptoms and they were simultaneous.)

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Three other members of President Rodrigo Duterte's Cabinet have caught COVID-19, namely Public Works Secretary Mark Villar, Education Secretary Leonor Briones, and Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez.

- Report from Joyce Balancio, ABS-CBN News