LEGAZPI CITY, April 21, 2018 -- The Philippine National Health Research System- Capacity Building Committee conducted a meeting with the Chairs of the Capacity Building Committee of the Regional Health Research and Development Consortia (RHRDCs), and RHRDC Regional Project Staff last 19-20 April 2018 in Xenia Hotel, Clark Freeport Zone, Pampanga.

This gathering aims to provide a platform for exchange of information and open discussion to ensure alignment and harmonization of plans on capacity building for health research system.

Each RHRDC presented their accomplishments in their respective regions including the new programs and strategies being conducted per region.

During the meeting, Dr. Marilou Tino, BCHRD-CBC Chair presented the Bicol Health Research Training program (Bicol HeaRT) and the Bicol One System for Health Research Environment program (B10SHARE), the new programs being implemented to encourage more researchers to conduct research.

After the presentation of each region, an open forum was conducted facilitated by Dr. Vicente Belizario, Jr., Chair, PNHRS CBC, to raise questions/ queries, recommendations and suggestions. Each region was commended for coming up with different programs to help the researchers in conducting their research.

In celebration of the Hypertension Awareness Month, the Philippine Heart Association – Baguio-Benguet Chapter (PHC-BBC) will lead free Blood Pressure Monitoring in different sites in Baguio City and Benguet throughout the month of May, said Dr. Mylene Genuino of the Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center (BGHMC) during the regular Kapihan sa Baguio in DOH Secretary’s Cottage, May 10, 2018.

Hypertension or high blood pressure occurs when there is a persistent increase in the force of blood that pushes against the walls of the blood vessels. The American Heart Association (AHA) redefined in November 2017 the high blood pressure measurement from 140/90 and higher, changed to 130/80 and higher. This medical condition may lead to stroke, heart attack, and kidney failure.

History of hypertension in the family, smoking, high cholesterol level in the body, obesity, chronic stress, alcohol consumption, and increasing age are some of the causes of the condition. Called as a “silent killer,” Dr. Genuino explained that high blood pressure often has no symptoms. However, some patients with hypertension may develop headache, dizziness, blurred vision, nausea and vomiting, chest pain and shortness of breath.

As prevention, Dr. Genuino encourage screening and change in lifestyle to avoid complications.

For screening, the BGHMC will provide free blood pressure monitoring at their waiting shed and main lobby, 9AM – 4PM on May 16-17, 2018. She further informed that other hospitals will offer the same services on a different date and for pharmacies, free BP monitoring is available everyday. In case of failure to avail such services, the doctor encouraged the public to purchase digital BP monitors of good quality and take their blood pressure at the heart-level or in the upper arm.

For lifestyle management, regular exercise and eating nutritious, low-salt, and low-fat food are necessary for the maintenance of healthy weight. Drinking alcohol in moderation and quitting smoking must also be observed.

LEGAZPI CITY, April 14, 2018 -- The Bicol Consortium for Health Research and Development-Capacity Building Committee called for a meeting to prepare for the presentation during the PNHRS-CBC Regional Consultative Meeting Luzon Cluster last April 13, 2018, held at BCHRD Office, Climate Change Academy Building, Bicol University Compound, Legazpi City.

Among the agenda discussed are the following:

1. CBC Consultative Meeting in Clark, Pampanga

2. Strategic Plan and Operational Planning

3. Accomplishments and Best Practices of the consortium It was attended by Dr. Marilou D. Tino, CBC Chair (USANT), and Ms. Lhea Dyn Bellen (DOST), Ms. Quenly M. Galarosa,     BCHRD CBC Staff and BCHRD Director Michael V. Montealegre.

The meeting mostly tackled about the Bicol HeaRT and BIOSHARE as these are the two new programs of the BCHRD. The committee follows the template and guides sent by the PCHRD- CBC preparing the presentation for the event. Considering all the inputs of the committee, the presentation was ready for submission. The meeting ended at 12:00 noon.

The No. 1 Contributing Risk Factor

for global health is raised blood pressure - causing strokes, attacks, and other cardiovascular complications.


lives are lost each year needlessly due to elevated blood pressure


of people with high blood pressure know it

These deaths are PREVENTABLE……….And that’s the real tragedy

Baguio City --- With the intention to capacitate the health researchers of the consortium’s member institutions in terms of writing a winning project proposal, a Dual – Phase Writeshop Series on Project Proposal Preparation was mounted lately by the Committee on Research Management, Ethics, and Capacity Building.

Project proposals are aligned with the Regional Unified Health Research Agenda (RUHRA) and National Unified Health Research Agenda (NUHRA).

“We are encouraging our health researchers to identify and make their projects relevant and addressed to the needs of the region”, Regional Coordinator Erlinda Palaganas said in her short message during the opening of the training.

The writeshop highlighted hands-on training and the essence of mentoring in the process. The activity aimed to help health researchers refine their research proposals and enhance the overall quality of their work by accessing timely advice and feedback from some of consortium’s top researchers.

As a result, 12 detailed research proposals are continuously being developed by the researchers in consultation with the designated mentors. Post-writeshop assistance will also be facilitated by the mentors for the participants to refine their work. 

The writeshop series was held at the El Cielito Inn, North Drive, Baguio City on April 16-17, 2018 (Phase 1) and at the Sarmiento Hall, UP Baguio on May 10-11, 2018 (Phase 2).

LEGAZPI CITY, May 8 (PIA) -- The Department of Health (DOH) Bicol regional office will conduct an immunization program “Ligtas Tigdas” around Bicol region to prevent and control the spread of measles to residents, especially among children.

“Sa Bicol region, sa Setyembre pa ang plano. Pero mauuna na sa Camarines Sur dahil may mga suspected cases na ng measles or tigdas na naitala (We plan to do the immunization on September this year in Bicol region, yet we will do it earlier for Camarines Sur province in the wake of suspected cases of measles recorded by the health office,” according to Maria June Robles, Immunization Program coordinator of DOH Bicol.

Robles said that the immunization program in Camarines Sur will start within this month of May or early part of June to immediately address the reported cases of measles.

Camarines Sur, according to the official, has recorded some 16 suspected measles cases from January 1 to April 21, 2018.

Increasing number of suspected measles cases are in Goa town, particularly in Bagumbayan Pequeño and Panday, both in Poblacion area.

The target for this immunization program are children aged 6 to 59 months or 5 years old below.

The health officers and staffs will conduct house to house visitations to perform the immunization. Fixed sites can also be provided so that the parents can bring their children for the immunization.

Meanwhile, when asked about the fear of people because of the Dengvaxia case, Robles pointed out that the measles vaccine is one of the safest vaccine and parents should not be worried because this is part of the routine immunization that they have been given to the babies since 1972.

Measles can lead to death if not prevented. Complications like severe respiratory infections such as pneumonia, severe diarrhea and related dehydration, encephalitis (an infection that causes brain swelling), ear infections, and blindness can happen and may lead to death.

Unvaccinated infants, young children, and pregnant women as well as any non-immune person are at risk with this infection. Severe measles is more likely among poorly nourished young children, especially those with insufficient vitamin A, or whose immune systems have been weakened by HIV/AIDS or other diseases.

Its signs and symptoms are high fever that lasts for four to seven days. Runny nose, cough, red and watery eyes, and small white spots inside the cheeks can develop in the initial stage.

After several days, a red rash erupts, usually on the face and upper neck. Over about three days, the rash spreads, eventually reaching the hands and feet. The rash lasts for five to six days, and then fades. On average, the rash occurs 14 days after exposure to the virus.

The virus is spread by coughing and sneezing, and close personal contact or direct contact with infected nasal or throat secretions.

There is no specific antiviral treatment that exists for measles virus. That is the reason why routine measles vaccination is needed for the children.

“Prevention is really better than cure,” Robles expressed.