In the middle of responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, the province of South Cotabato held a ceremonial signing of the Universal Health Care memorandum of agreement (MOA) between the Provincial Government of South Cotabato and its component city and municipalities during the Expanded Provincial Local Health board meeting at the Green State Convention Center, Koronadal City on March 26, 2021
The MOA highlights the pooling of funds for the Special Health Fund (SHF), based on Article V: Financing and Sustainability which mandates that the component LGUs – the City/Municipal and the Provincial Government may contribute to the SHF as LGU’s financial counterpart. Each LGU may contribute Php100.00 per capita. The pooling of funds amounting to Php20.00 as initial contribution may commence in 2021 until the ceiling of Php100.00 is achieved in the year 2025 (or whichever comes first). The Php100.00 per capita based on the projected population of each LGU and apportioned 50-50 between the City/Municipal LGUs and the Provincial Government may continue after 2025.
“This fund will be an initial fund for SHF but can be utilized as provincial health insurance on top of the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) especially for the indigent. A policy on utilization should be made so that all people will be protected from financial burden when it comes to health services and equitable access can be realized,” Dr. Alah Baby C. Vingno, Provincial Health Officer I, explained.
The members of the board present during the said MOA signing were Governor Reynaldo S. Tamayo, Jr. – Chairman of the Board, Dr. Rogelio B. Aturdido, Jr. – Vice Chairman of the Board, Dr. Marilou Barbara Libatique - Provincial DOH Officer,and Margie S. Managuit - Representative of Mahintana Foundation, Inc. The expanded members present were Hon. Eliordo U. Ogena – Koronadal City Mayor, Hon. Floro S. Gandam - Municipality of Lake Sebu Mayor, Hon. Benjamin V. Figueroa, Jr – Municipality of Tantangan Mayor, Hon. Leonard T. Escobillo – Municipality of Tampakan Mayor, Hon. Sulpicio F. Villalobos – Municipality of Sto. Niño Mayor, and Hon. Atty. Antonio O. Bendita – Municipality of Surallah Mayor.
- Written by Nicole Carlisle V. Camino, RN
Cancer is the second leading cause of death in the Philippines and worldwide. According to the Philippine Cancer Society Institute, incidence of cancer is higher among females than in males. Lung cancer for men (17.9%) and breast cancer for women (17.6%) are the most prevalent cancer cases based on the Cancer Country Profile 2020 of the World Health Organization. In the observance of the National Cancer Consciousness Week, there is a need to increase general awareness of the risks and of the treatment and containment of cancer. Along with it, the common risk factors of cancer have to be emphasized as well. These include the usage of nicotine, like cigarettes and smokeless tobacco, becoming overweight or obese, insufficient consumption of fruits and vegetables, lack of physical exercise, use of alcohol, sexually transmitted infection like Human Papilloma Virus, hepatitis infection or other carcinogenic diseases, exposure to ionizing and ultraviolet radiation, and urban air pollution.
If you think you have the kind of lifestyle and environment which can be considered as risk factors of cancer, then you must seek medical consultation for early detection of signs and symptoms of cancer. In SOCCSKSARGEN, the most common screening exams used to detect cancer are pap smear, visual inspection with acetic acid, and breast examinations. You may avail of any of such examinations. Meanwhile, everyone is encouraged to do a lifestyle modification as early as possible to prevent such disease from happening. Together, we can help eliminate cancer in the region. Our actions do matter.
- Written by Jonathan R. Gorre, RN, MAN
To facilitate a comprehensive and coordinated response to the COVID-19 pandemic and other (re)emerging diseases with similar magnitude, the Department of Health - Center for Health Development SOCCSKSARGEN region launched the One Hospital Command System (OHCS) which ensures effective and efficient health facility referral.
OHCS is one approach that can strategically address and mitigate the impact of this pandemic. It also hopes to improve the interoperability of health facilities, both government and private, in the region and nearby regions. The system shall be located in the core referral center of the province, a Level 1 or Level 2 government hospital which shall be headed by the Chief of Hospital. Level 3 hospitals like the Cotabato Regional and Medical Center (CRMC) and St. Elizabeth Hospital in General Santos City shall serve as apex hospitals for severe and critical cases of COVID-19.
The operation center is the nerve center of the OHCS. It is composed of the Hospital Emergency Management Services (HEMS) and the COVID-19 Clinical Management Committee (CCMC). This center shall receive and relay calls from the Municipal Health Officer or City Health Officer when patients are for further work-up and management. The OHCS will also facilitate medical transport and patient pickup arrangements, provide health system capacity, data analytics, risk communications, and optimize the use of critical care services of every hospital in the area.
For the establishment and institutionalization of OHCS, Regional Order No. 0020 s. 2020 dated October 28, 2020, was released. This guideline shall apply to CHD SOCCSKSARGEN offices, retained hospitals, and PhilHealth. Likewise, this shall also apply to all public and private health facilities, all Local Government Units (LGUs), all Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Offices (DRRMO), and other relevant stakeholders.
To further manage critical cases with comorbidities especially with a cardiac problem that needs a catheter laboratory, a network with Southern Philippines Medical Center (SPMC), Davao City expressed their willingness and support to the OHCS of the region. “We hope to provide quality interfacility transfer and healthcare to the people of Mindanao.” Benedict Edward Valdez, MD, Emergency Medicine Department chair and One Hospital Command Center Head of Region XI, explained.
The Department of Health – Center for Health Development SOCCSKSARGEN region’s Program managers/cluster heads of the Local Health Support Division (LHSD), Development Management Officers, LGU Chief of Hospitals, and Program Coordinators of the Provincial/Municipal Health Offices attended the 2022 Annual Operational Plan (AOP).
The Annual Operational Plan (AOP) is a yearly implementation of the Local Investment Plan for Health (LIPH) which contains all the programs, projects and activities to be implemented within the year, annual targets, time frame, resource, budgetary requirements, and sources of funding.
This annual undertaking is an actualization of the Republic Act No. 11223, Section 22 which states that “National Government through the Department of Health shall provide financial and non-financial grant in accordance with approved Local Investment Plan for Health/ Annual Operational Plan.
Following are the schedules of AOP per province:
• South Cotabato Province: January 12-13, 2021
• Sarangani Province: January 14, 2021
• General Santos City: January 15, 2021
• 2nd District, Cotabato Province: January 18 -19, 2021
• 1st District, Cotabato Province: January 20-21, 2021
• 3rd District, Cotabato Province: January 28-29, 2021
• Chief of Hospitals and SP on Health: February 2-3, 2021
• Cotabato City: February 1, 2021; and
• Sultan Kudarat Province: February 4-5, 2021
In his message, Regional Director Aristides Concepcion Tan, MD, MPH, CESO III said, “This is a great opportunity to be together and plan together. I hope that it will be an honest identification of needs, realistic and doable for 2022, and rest assured that DOH will always be there.”
Tasks during the AOP included the formulation of situational and gap analyses from “bottom-up” plan based on the identified problem from the indicators in the latest LGU scorecard rated as red; top causes of mortality and morbidity; gaps of Geographically Isolated and Disadvantaged Areas (GIDA); ICC/ IP (define) and urban poor; poor performance in the latest Field Health Services Information System (FHSIS); and other priority gaps/concerns which have a major impact on the health system. It summarizes the narrative of the Health Situationer, according to the World Health Organization (WHO) building blocks of health systems, namely: leadership and governance; financing; health workforce; information; medical products, vaccines and technology; and service delivery.
According to Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, “A goal without a plan is only a wish.
Source: Heatlh Focus Q1