Marcos admin's health chief? Salvana says, 'No comment'

ABS-CBN News

Posted at May 16 2022 12:55 PM | Updated as of May 16 2022 01:01 PM

Medical expert Dr. Edsel Salvaña shares his views on the new COVID-19 variant with President Rodrigo Duterte during a meeting with the National Task Force against Coronavirus Disease-2019 (NTF COVID-19) and medical experts at the Malacañang Palace on Nov. 29, 2021. Toto Lozano, Presidential Photo/File
Medical expert Dr. Edsel Salvaña shares his views on the new COVID-19 variant with President Rodrigo Duterte during a meeting with the National Task Force against Coronavirus Disease-2019 (NTF COVID-19) and medical experts at the Malacañang Palace on Nov. 29, 2021. Toto Lozano, Presidential Photo/File

 
MANILA — Infectious disease specialist Dr. Edsel Salvana said on Monday he has "no comment" for now on reports that he could head the Department of Health under the administration of presumptive president Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. 

Salvana said while he heard such reports, "Siguro sa ngayon, no comment na lang po muna ako. Let’s go through the official channels kung meron man." 

(Perhaps, I would just have no comment right now. Let’s go through the official channels, if there are any.) 

A member of the DOH's technical advisory group, Salvana said he would "rather focus on our COVID prevention and control right now." 

"The last thing we need right now is kung umakyat na naman iyong levels ng COVID sa atin. Sa ngayon, nakatutok po ako d’yan. At siguro kung meron mang mga ganiyang bagay (Cabinet appointment), siguro hintayin na lang po natin kung may announcements from the proper authorities," he said in a public briefing. 

(The last thing we need right now is for our COVID levels to go up. Right now, I'm focused on that. And perhaps if there is such a thing, maybe let us just wait if there will be announcements from the proper authorities.) 

A graduate of the University of the Philippines College of Medicine, Salvana had his Internal Medicine Residency at the Medical College of Wisconsin in the United States, according to his profile posted at the Philippine Genome Center website.

His Infectious Diseases Fellowship at the University Hospitals Case Medical Center and Case Western Reserve University, also in the U.S., focused on International Infectious Diseases.

Salvana also got a Diploma in Tropical Medicine and Hygiene from the Case Western Reserve University.

He returned to the Philippines under the Balik (Returning) Scientist Program of the Department of Science and Technology to work on tropical medicine and other local infectious diseases, his profile states.

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Video courtesy of PTV

In the meantime, Salvana urged the next administration to keep the mandatory use of anti-virus masks in public areas. 

"We are in a good stage right now na as much as possible, we want to maintain it. At some point, ‘pag mukhang safe na talaga, puwede nating pag-isipan na tanggalin na iyong remaining restriction," he said. 

(If it looks like it is already safe, we could think about removing the remaining restriction.) 

The Philippines reported 175 new cases on Saturday, less than 200 for the 13th straight day, ABS-CBN Data Analytics head Edson Guido said.

The number of active cases, 3,008, was the lowest since April 5, 2020, he added. 

Metro Manila and dozens of other areas nationwide will remain under the loosest of the 5 pandemic alert levels until the end of the April, Malacañang announced on Sunday.