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May 2013

14 May 2013

DOST-PCHRD funds WMSU’s research on exclusive breastfeeding in Zamboanga City

In a recent study conducted by the Department of Science and Technology – Food and Nutrition Research Institute (DOST- FNRI), the Filipino mothers who are exclusively breastfeeding their infants are declining in the Philippines. In addition, exclusive breastfeeding is practiced by only 8.6 percent of the survey respondents, while a high 55.4 percent feed their children with other milk or in combination with complementary feeding. This low level of breastfeeding practices for infants and young children is consistent with the high prevalence of malnutrition among 0-5 year age group where 22.2 % and 27.9 % are underweight and stunted, respectively. Further, the FNRI-DOST survey also shows that among three-month old infants, nine out of 10 were given water as complementary food. Among four-month old infants, two out of 10 were given with sugar. These results fell short of the recommendation that only breast milk should be given to infants before six months.

In line with this, Ms. Melanie F. Lear, a researcher and faculty member of the Western Mindanao State University (WMSU), conceptualized a research proposal entitled, “Exclusive Breastfeeding among Selected Communities in Zamboanga City”. Generally, the study seeks to determine the factors affecting exclusive breastfeeding in selected communities in Zamboanga City. It also aims to determine the prevalence of mothers who exclusively breastfeed their infants in 2011-2012, as well as the knowledge and attitudes affecting exclusive breastfeeding practices of mothers in the local communities.

The proposal was submitted to the Zamboanga Consortium for Health Research and Development (ZCHRD) for review and endorsement for funding to the Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (PCHRD) of the DOST. PCHRD is committed to develop and enhance the research capability of institutions in the regions, as a strategy to improve the health conditions of Filipinos. The proposal received a total funding amount of Two Hundred Thousand Pesos (P200,000.00) through the DOST-PCHRD Grants-in-Aid Program. The research started last March 2013, and expected to complete in August 2013.

Ms. Lear said that the research findings and recommendations would serve as a baseline data to improve the maternal and child care delivery. Consequently, it will aid health service providers, practitioners, government agencies such as the DOH, DOST-PCHRD, and other non-government organizations to effectively formulate / enhance policies and advocacy to achieve better nutritional status of our infants and young children.

Taken from

Date Monday, 06 May 2013 10:09

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DOST holds health tea making seminar-workshop

Tea making seminar-workshop

The growing popularity of herbal beverages and their health benefits has propelled the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Negros Oriental Provincial Science and Technology Center to conduct a tea making seminar-workshop for existing and potential entrepreneurs in Negros Oriental. Around 15 participants attended the training held recently at the local DOST office .

The workshop included a comprehensive lecture on tea-making and hands-on exercises, and covered an extensive discussion on the proper methods and techniques most especially in drying, mixing and storing herbs. Also pointed out in the seminar are the correct way of making teabags, proper packaging and labeling; and fair costing of tea products.

“Herbal tea has been accepted as a catch-all term for any non-caffeinated beverage made from the infusion or decoction of herbs, spices, or other plant material in water since “tea” in the real sense of word is made of cured leaves of the tea plant Camellia sinensis,” explained Vina R. Antopina, the resident food and food safety expert from Bohol who facilitated the workshop. The participants had the chance to explore their creativity in mixing different types of dried plant materials and creating different  kinds of natural  and such as dried turmeric, malunggay, guava leaves, basil, lagundi leaves, mango peelings, and orange peelings, among others.

Antopina also reminded the participants that packaging plays an integral role and is widely considered as one of the most important attributes in every firm’s product.

For his part, Provincial S&T Director Gilbert R. Arbon expressed high hopes in maintaining and expanding the conduct of technology trainings as part of the department’s ongoing goal to help SMEs. The seminar has been part of the DOST’s continuing advocacy of promoting science and technology to the people as well as preparing them to become future entrepreneurs.

The participants present are mainly from the province’s food industry sector particularly in Mabinay, Canlaon and Dumaguete.

Taken from\

Date Friday, 03 May 2013 08:24

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Recognition of trailblazing efforts in medical research and clinical innovation

Medical researchers can now look forward to getting recognized for their work with the launch of the Geminiano T. de Ocampo Visionary Awards for Medical Research. Launched by the National Academy of Science and Technology (NAST) last November 8, 2012 at the Hyatt Hotel Grand Casino, the award seeks to recognize clinician researchers who have created the vision for medical research in the country through their outstanding work in medical research. It also aims to recognize those who have pioneered the trail for medical innovations and health research development.

The award is given in honor of the national scientist in the field of Opthalmology and the father of modern Philippine ophthalmology Dr. Geminiano de Ocampo, who himself was a visionary man who realized the future of medicine in the country through his groundbreaking and pioneering efforts in clinical practice and in research.

Candidates can be nominated by individuals, scientific and technological societies, professional societies or association, research institutes, universities and colleges.

Qualifications include:
1. Natural born citizens of the Philippines
2. Graduate of Medicine in an accredited and duly recognized school or college of medicine
3. Remarkable track record as a clinician practicing in the Philippines
4. Proven track record and accomplishment in medical research
5. No proven administrative case or case of moral turpitude

Nominations will be screened by the NAST secretariat and will be evaluated by a board of judges. The selected awardee will receive a gold medal, a plaque and a Php 100,000 cash prize.

In 1952, Dr. de Ocampo established the de Ocampo hospital, the first eye hospital in the Philippines. He was also the first Filipino to design a corneal dissector in 1956, and was the first Filipino to perform the first successful corneal transplant.

The award is made possible with the endowment of the de Ocampo family and will be administered by the NAST Health Sciences Division. It will be given biennially and will take place during the birth anniversary of Dr. de Ocampo, on September 16th of the year.

Nomination forms are available for download at the NAST website: www., or from the NAST secretariat, at the 3rd level, Science Heritage Building, DOST Compound, Bicutan, Taguig City.


Date 24 April 2013 14:40

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CVHRDC Forum on Challenges and Opportunities in Research

The Committee on Human Resource and Development of the Central Visayas Consortium for Health Research and Development chaired by Dr. Melfer R. Montoya conducted a “Forum on Challenges and Opportunities in Research” on January 31, 2013 at the Cebu Institute of Medicine Amphitheater 1.  This activity was conducted to increase awareness and knowledge on health research.

All member institutions together with the University of Cebu and the University of San Jose Recoletos who applied for membership in the consortium were invited and encouraged to send 15 participants per institution.

The participants, speakers and guests poses for a group photo after the conduct of the forum.Three competent speakers were invited to share their expertise in the field of health research.  Dr. Asuncion M. Anden, the Director of the Department of Health Region VII, Dr. Alan B. Feranil, the Director of the University of San Carlos, Office of Population Studies Foundation and Dr. Frances E. Edillo, a faculty member of the Biology Department of the University of San Carlos.  Due to other important commitments, Dr. Anden was represented by Dr. Crisol Tabarejo, Epidemiologist of the Department of Health Region VII.


Dr. Tabarejo talked about the topic “Revisiting the National Unified Health Research Agenda (NUHRA)”.  She said that the NUHRA 2011-2016 is a product of consultation and consolidation of the research priorities of the four core agencies of the PNHRS (DOH, PCHRD-DOST, CHED, NIH-UPM).  She stressed the importance of the NUHRA that was designed for the following purposes:  1)To provide focus and direction on health research and development efforts that will address the country’s health concerns for 2011-2016, 2) To serve as a guide where policy makers, funding and donor agencies and researchers from public and private sectors should invest to ensure the health and productivity of the country’s productivity, 3) To assist in providing evidence based solutions to pressing local health problems, 4) To serve as basis to maximize resource utilization and minimize duplication of research efforts, 5) that NUHRA serves as the template for health research and development efforts in addressing the country’s health concerns for 2011-2016.

 Dr. Tabarejo also emphasized that the formulation of the NUHRA 2011-2016 is anchored on the following national and international commitments: 1)The Millenium Development Goals (MDGs), 2) The Philippine Development Plan 2011-2016, 3) The “Aquino Health Agenda: Universal Health Care for all Filipinos”, 4) The Presidential Coordinating Council on Research and Development’s (PCCRD) National R&D Priorities Plan 2011-2016, 5) The DOST Five-Point Priority Program for 2011-2016. She ended her talk by encouraging the audience to come up with quality researches aligned with the NUHRA or RUHRA.

Dr. Alan B. Feranil discussed the topic “Looking for and Obtaining Funding for Health Research in the Philippines.” He shared to the group the different funding agencies coming from different sectors of the society.  Among the government agencies that fund health research are the Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (PCHRD), Department of Health, DENR-Environment Management Bureau for environmental issues, and DOLE-Occupational Health and Safety Center for occupational health concerns.  Local foundations such as Gruppo Medica and Pfizer Foundation also fund health researches.  Foreign sources include Korean International Cooperation Agency (KOICA),   UNFPA (United Nations Fund for Population Activities), UNICEF, UNAIDS, USAID, and many others.  Dr. Feranil emphasized that research funding is not a problem but focus should be on producing quality researches.

Dr. Frances E. Edillo focused her talk on the Research Operational Mechanism in Academic Institutions.” The lecture encouraged all universities to become research universities. She also brought in the new typology of Philippine Educational Reform (cited by Salas, 2011) that for a University to remain a university, it should meet the following criteria: doctoral programs in at least 5 disciplines, 70% of BS programs with a thesis or project paper, International linkages, 10% of enrollment should be graduate programs, 30% of faculty be actively involved in research and 10% of faculty should have publications in refereed journals.

 A lot of participants showed their interest to know more on the different topics presented by the speakers that it led to a very lively discussion during the open forum.  Dr. Amelia Biglete, the Regional Director of the Commission on Higher Education Region VII confirmed that the Commission on Higher Education is very much willing to fund quality researches.



Date 23 April 2013 15:08

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EVHRDC members attend 31st PCHRD anniversary


Dr. Romuladez at the PCHRD 31st Anniversary.


EVHRDC members attended the 31st PCHRD Anniversary celebrations held at the Sofitel Philippine Plaza, CCP Complex, Metro Manila last March 18, 2013. The one day event was focused on the theme "People at the Center of Health and Health Research" with former Health Secretary Dr. Alfredo G. Romualdez,Jr., as the keynote speaker. To welcome the guests, Dr. Jaime C. Montoya, PCHRD Executive Director, started thanking everyone who attended the ceremonies and to all partners who have strived hard in achieving the goals of the council and the health research system as a whole. He also happily announced that the Philippines will be hosting the forthcoming "2014 Global Forum for Health Research".

A message was given by Secretary Mario G. Montejo, DOST Secretary, where he congratulated PCHRD on its 31st year of unwavering efforts to develop the health research system. He mentioned some initiatives of DOST on health. He focused on gadgets with its application accessible through the internet. On of this is the RX Box, which allows consultation through the net where doctors in the hinter barangay could seek assistance from doctor specialists through email or through texting. Another message was delivered by Secretary Enrique T. Ona, DOH Secretary, who stressed on the sustainability of the program "Kalusugang Pangkalahatan or Universal Health Care". He stressed that it is important to gather evidences of success as these are crucial in policy making. Furthermore, he stressed that the Philippines can learn from best practices in other countries and with some modifications apply these learnings. On of the new initiatives towards mobilizing funds for research was done by downloading these funds to PCHRD who managed the funds. Another DOH initiative is the establishment of a Health Research Hub at DOH currently chaired by Dr. Ernesto Domingo. This will hopefully capacitate DOH staff to conduct research and eventually manage its own research funds to the fullest.

The keynote message was given by the 1st Executive Director of PCHRD, Dr. Alberto G. Romualdez. He walked through the history of PCHRD which started with 5 brains who formulated the health research agenda with bias on human beings. He was delighted of the many initiatives done by PCHRD through the years just to move research forward. He also acknowledged the presence of the Academician Gelia Castillo (who was supposedly the one who would have delivered the keynote address but preferred to just be a reactor to the different topics lined up for the day). He ended his message by congratulating the men and women of PCHRD for the countless accomplishments of the council sustaining the efforts in health R&D.

The Panel discussion that followed were on: 1) People's Health: Listening and translating Health Needs to Research Actions; 2) Research Actions: Improving research utilization by increasing research publishing productivity and International Visibility; and 3) New paradigms and global trends in research publications: how Philippine research benefits.

The activity was attended by Health Research Consortium Members, PNHRS Members, SUCs, National Government Agencies Representatives, Private Organizations and Private Individuals.

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PCHRD awards VSU Tuklas Lunas Center

Awarding of VSU Tuklas Lunas Center during the PCHRD Anniversary.The Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (PCHRD) had formally awarded the Tuklas Lunas Center Program to the Visayas State University, Visca, Baybay City, Leyte. This was done during 31st PCHRD Anniversary at the Sofitel Philippine Plaza Hotel, CCP Complex, Metro Manila. Dr. Jaime Montoya, PCHRD Executive Director, together with Sec. Mario G. Montejo, DOST and Sec. Enrique T. Ona, DOH, handed the plaque to Dr. Jose L. Bacusmo, VSU President and Dr. Edgardo Tulin, VP and Center In-Charge.

Tuklas Lunas refers to the drug discovery research and development program, initiated by PCHRD in its desire to provide solutions to the countries' medical needs. Through this program, PCHRD aims to establish a Drug Discovery Database which will store information on all researches conducted on natural products. This will serve as a tool in guiding researchers as to which plant/animal species have the potential for further studies leading to the discovery of new drugs.

The first Tuklas Lunas Center was awarded to Mindanao State University - Iligan Institute of Technology.


Taken from

Date 10 April 2013 11:57

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Health Research Evaluation Training at USI

Very keen on realizing its objective of capacitating local researchers interested in health and health-related studies, the BCHRD conducted the Research Evaluation Training with the twofold goal of aiding the Research Proposal Evaluation Team in developing a tool for evaluating research proposals, and assisting researchers in fine-tuning their revised proposals.

The consortium’s Evaluation Team is composed of the Research and Development (R&D) and Ethics Review (ERC) Committees.  The research proponents invited to the training were those who participated inthe Research Methods Training conducted on January 29-31, 2013 at Bicol University, Legazpi City.

The Research Evaluation Training, held on February 27-28, 2013 in Naga City, at the Universidad de Sta. Isabel (USI) College of Nursing Lecture Hall, was the second phase of the Health Research Proposal Packaging Process (HRPPP), which the BCHRD is implementing; the Research Methods Trainingin January was Phase I of the process.

The Participants were: Prof. Sandy C. Lasa of USI, chairman of the ERC; other USI faculty- Profs Janet S. dela Cruz, Teresa B. Pambid, Glenda C. Icaro,  Mary Ann Tumbado, and Mr. Rhandy V. Salvani; Prof. Elma R. Peralta and Dr. Ma. Clara Ll. Rubino Faculty and Dean respectively of Ateneo de Naga University (AdNU); Dr. Yolanda L. Castroverde and Dr. Carmelita S. Baylon of the University of Nueva Caceres (UNC); Dr. Raul G. Bradecina, Profs. Ana L. Vargas, and Emelina R. Padayao of Partido State University (PSU); Dr. Nilo B. Romeroso of Ago Medical Center-Bicol Christian College of Medicine (AMEC-BCCM); Prof. Joyce S. Obis of University of Saint Anthony (USANT); Prof. Athena G.  Masip of Aquinas University of Legazpi (AUL); researchers and BCHRD committee members who were part of the Bicol University delegation included Dr. Richard L. Bartolata (BUCN), Profs. Ida Francia H. Revale and Daile Meek Salvador-Membreve (BUCS), Profs. Michael Angelo D. Brogada and Aris J. Ordoñez (BU CS-CS/IT), Prof. Ma. Corazon R. Naz, (BUESC), Profs. Carina B. Orden and Dennis B. Gogola (BUTC), BCHRD Director Dr. Alma S. Banua, and the BCHRD Secretariat composed of Ms. Reizha O. Rito and Ms. Maria Vicenta Corazon B. Guidote.  Also present was Ms. Marie Jeanne “Gigi” B. Berroya, PCHRD-DOST Regional Project Officer for Region V.

Resource speaker for the activity was Dr. Godofreda “Jody” V. Dalmacion, M.D., MSc, MHPEd, FPOGS- a professor at the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, and Assistant Director of the Department of Clinical Epidemiology, College of Medicine, University of the Philippines (UP), Manila.  Dr. Jody earned the overwhelming respect of the participants with her sincere, pro-active approach.  The research proponents appreciated the one-on-one sessions they had with her, and her promise to read their revisions. Assisting Dr. Jody was her very able co-facilitator, Mr. Juan Carlo “JC” G. Remulla, R.N., a University Researcher at UP Manila- National Institutes of Health.

The training ended with setting of the deadline for submission of revised proposals to the BCHRD secretariat, (total of 5 proposals) and finalization of the R&D and ERC Standard Operating Procedures.The two-day training/seminar involved pre- and post-tests, lectures, small group discussions, and critiquing of proposals.













































Taken from:

Date: Sunday, 24 March 2013 15:22


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