Country’s biggest health research confab begins in Ilocos Norte

By Freddie G. Lazaro


LAOAG CITY, August 7 (PIA) — Experts and enthusiasts in health research across the country are under one roof beginning today for the national observance of the Philippine National Health Research System Week at the Plaza del Norte in this city.

The three-day convention, hosted by the Region 1 Health Research and Development Consortium (R1HRDC), gathers at least 600 stakeholders, medical students and doctors from various schools.

Dr. Ma. Lourdes K. Otayza, chief of hospital of the Mariano Marcos Memorial Hospital & Medical Center in Batac City and chair of the R1HRDC, said the event aims to provide a platform for researchers in health and development.

“(It provides a venue) to interact, to learn from each other, to share information and experiences and to voice concerns that contribute to research–based solutions to health problems,” she said.

She added the observance focuses on people as the center of health and health research. PNHRS is an integrated national framework for health research in the country.

Prominent national and local dignitaries are expected to grace the event namely Secretary Mario G. Montejo of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), Health Secretary Enrique T. Ona, Ilocos Norte Governor Imee R. Marcos; Chairperson Patricia B. Licuanan of the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) and Dr. Vicente Y. Belizario, Jr., the Vice Chancellor for Research of UP Manila and Executive Director of the National Institute of Health.

The event includes a competition on health poster in the student and professional categories with at least 18 finalists and a contest for student research presentation with seven finalists.

At least four researches have been selected as finalists in the regional research paper oral competition under professional category.

These research papers are titled: The natural transovarial transmission of of Dengue virus in Aedes Aegypti; The incidence of active tuberculosis among health workers; Levels of breast milk; and Health care financing in Region 1.

Some of the health researches to be presented focus on the use of herbal medicine for treatment of illnesses.

Other topics to be discussed are the indigenous peoples’ health research challenges in their communities and role of researchers in achieving universal health care.

The PNHRS observance falls on the second week of August by virtue of the Presidential Proclamation 1309 issued in June 2007.

The research body is a convergence strategy that aims to promote cooperation and integration of all health research efforts and stakeholders in the country to ensure that research contributes to evidence-informed health policies and actions.

The PNHRS has four core government agencies involved in its health research undertaking to include DOST, DOH, CHED and University of the Philippines Manila (UPM) with the 17 Regional Health Research and Development Consortia.#