Miriam Santiago in hospital, but not in ICU – family

MANILA, Philippines – Former senator Miriam Defensor Santiago is currently confined in the hospital as part of her continued treatment for lung cancer, but is not in intensive care.

Her daughter-in-law Mechel Santiago told Rappler that the former senator has been confined in a private room at St Luke's Medical Center in Taguig City since September 2. She also clarified that the former senator is not in the intensive care unit (ICU), as earlier reports stated.

"She is currently being treated for her cancer and the family is hoping that she will fully recover. Thank you for respecting our privacy in the meantime. Thank you for continuously praying for her," Mechel said in a message Sunday, September 11.

The family remains optimistic that the feisty senator will survive her battle against cancer.

"She loves all of you. She is a fighter and will continuously fight this battle!" Mechel wrote on Facebook.

Last May, Santiago was rushed to the Makati Medical Center's ICU due to complications stemming from her cancer. She was discharged a week after.

The senator was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer in 2014. She later announced a year after that she had survived the disease and would be gunning for the presidency in the 2016 elections.

Last May, Santiago ran alongside then vice presidential candidate Ferdinand Marcos Jr.

Her campaign was limited to granting speaking engagements to students. She also skipped the second presidential debate held in Cebu to participate in a trial of a new anti-cancer drug.

She was able to go back to the campaign trail a month later, but landed 5th in the 5-way presidential race. – Rappler.com

Patty Pasion

Patty leads the Rappler+ membership program. She used to be a Rappler multimedia reporter who covered politics, labor, and development issues of vulnerable sectors.