Duterte says he went to hospital for blood test

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte said he visited a hospital recently so doctors could take samples of his blood.

"Galing ako sa ospital. Kinunan ako ng dugo (I came from the hospital. They got my blood.)," he said on Thursday, December 6, during the labor department's anniversary.

He even showed the part of his arm where blood was taken from him, quipping that there was still some drops of blood on his skin.

In his usual manner when talking about his health, he made light of the hospital visit.

"'Pag tusok nila sa syringe, kukunan ako ng dugo, walang lalabas, puro hangin (When they pierced me with a syringe to get my blood, nothing will come out, just wind.)," he said, causing members of the audience to laugh.

Duterte has typically spoken of his health issues in a lighthearted manner. For instance, when he claimed in a Cabinet meeting that his medical tests came back negative for cancer, he muddled things up by joking that he was like a magnet that had a positive and negative side.

In his public delivery of the joke, it even sounded like he was saying another set of medical test results showed he was positive for cancer.

The Constitution calls for the President to be transparent about his health if he has a serious ailment. Malacañang insists Duterte is not required to make public his medical records since, they claim, he has no serious illness at the moment. – Rappler.com

Pia Ranada

Pia Ranada covers the Office of the President and Bangsamoro regional issues for Rappler. While helping out with desk duties, she also watches the environment sector and the local government of Quezon City. For tips or story suggestions, you can reach her at pia.ranada@rappler.com.