By Alder Almo
The Philippine Medical Association (PMA) yesterday admonished Private Hospitals Association of the Philippines (PHAP) President Dr. Rustico Jimenez for making public statements on Manny Pacquiao’s supposed showing of early signs of Parkinson’s’ disease.
“As a policy, we at PMA must not issue such statement on the alleged medical condition of Pacquiao unless he has been diagnosed and undergone examinations,” PMA president Modesto Llamas said in a press conference.
Two weeks ago, Jimenez claimed that based on his observation during Pacquiao’s interviews after his devastating loss from Mexican Juan Manuel Marquez, the Filipino boxing icon was already showing early signs of the Parkinson’s’ disease, the same condition that afflicted his trainer Freddie Roach and the legendary Muhammad Ali.
The PHAP president said that the slur in speech and hand twitches of Pacquiao during TV interviews should be a cause for concern.
“Supposedly, if Pacquiao is Jimenez’s patient, the findings must be treated with confidentiality and that could only be announced if there is a patient’s approval. In this case, Pacquiao is not his patient, therefore Jimenez is not allowed to take up the matter of alleged Parkinson’s disease,” Llamas added.
PMA Commission on Ethics chairperson, Dr. Nimfra Baria, however, postponed judgment whether Jimenez had violated the code of medical ethics until they get his side.
Jimenez told ABS-CBN News that he is ready should he be summoned by the PMA Ethics Committee. In the same interview, he also apologized to Pacquiao.
“I’m not labeling Congressman Pacquiao as having Parkinson’s disease,” Jimenez said. “Observation ko lang ‘yun… Ang sinasabi ko, magpatest siyang mabuti.”
“Kung nasaktan siya because of my observation, e humihingi na ko ng apology sa kanya,” he added.
Meanwhile, reports claim that Pacquiao has forgiven Jimenez but maintained that the PMA has the right to summon him for his Parkinson’s claim.