Senate adopts stricter COVID-19 protocols after Lorenzana tests positive

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Nov 18 2021 10:50 AM

MANILA - The Philippine Senate is adopting stricter COVID-19 protocols for visitors including resource persons entering the Senate premises.

This, after Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana tested positive for COVID-19 infection following Tuesday's Senate hearing for his department's budget.

Under the new protocols, all visitors, guests and resource persons entering the Senate must have negative RT-PCR or COVID-19 Antigen test results valid for 24 hours; a medical certificate indicating negative COVID-19 symptoms and COVID-19 vaccination card. 

Names of the guests, visitors and resource persons must be submitted to the office of the Senate Sergeant-At-Arms at least a day before their scheduled appearance. 

Lorenzana, who had tested positive and recovered from COVID-19 last April, confirmed Wednesday that he was again positive for coronavirus infection.

The defense chief was seated behind Sen. Ronald "Bato" Dela Rosa who was defending the proposed budget for the Department of National Defense.

Senators Joel Villanueva and Juan Miguel Zubiri, who were both directly exposed to Lorenzana during the budget hearing, have tested negative for COVID-19 after taking an antigen test. 

Sen. Francis Tolentino said he also tested negative for COVID-19 after his screening earlier Wednesday. - Sherrie Ann Torres, ABS-CBN News