Iloilo gets reward for eliminating filariasis


ILOILO – The provincial government, through the Provincial Health Office, has received P1-million reward for making Iloilo lymphatic filariasis-free in six consecutive years since 2008.

The reward, which will be used to sustain the status of the province, came from the Department of Health in Western Visayas.

Provincial Health Officer Patricia Grace Trabado presented the check to Governor Arthur Defensor Sr. and Vice Governor Raul Tupas during the flag raising ceremony on Monday.

Iloilo has been recognized by DOH as lymphatic filariasis free this year along with other 15 provinces in the Philippines.

The recognition was due to the effective implementation of mass drug administration to children aged two years old and above in all local government units here.

Lymphatic filariasis, also known as elephantiasis, is a painful and profoundly disfiguring disease causing temporary or permanent disability.

Aside from this reward, Trabado also announced that the province reaped numerous awards during the recent DOH Regional Awarding Ceremony held in Sarabia Manor Hotel in Iloilo City.

In terms of the Integrated Non-Communicable Diseases Prevention and Control Program, the Provincial Board of Iloilo was hailed for passing Resolution 2014-320 or the measure adopting the DOH’s Revised Policy on Violence and Injury Prevention and the National Policy on the Establishment of Pre-Hospital Emergency Medical Service (PHEMS) System.

The Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office under Executive Director Jerry Bionat was also recognized for organizing PHEMS in rural health units here.

Acting as the first responder, PHEMS provides basic life support (first aid) to patients before they are transported to the nearest district hospitals.

The provincial government also gained an award for accomplishing a blood collection of more than one percent of its total population and for establishing a Provincial Blood Service Network (PBSN).

PBSN is a network of blood service facilities stationed in provincial and district hospitals in association with the Philippine Red Cross Western Visayas Blood Center and Western Visayas Medical Center Blood Bank.

Dr. Robert Ponje of Hospital Management Office was also recognized for his exemplary performance in National Voluntary Blood Service Program.

Barotac Viejo and Concepcion, on the other hand, were awarded for accomplishing a blood collection of more than one percent of its population and for its exemplary practice and humanitarian assistance in Mental Health Program, respectively.

Sta. Barbara, New Lucena and Anilao were also recognized for promoting a hundred percent smoke-free environment (Red Orchid Award).

In terms of Environment and Occupational Health and Infectious Diseases Control Program, all the Animal Bite Treatment Centers were awarded for meeting DOH standards.

Iloilo also received the National Tuberculosis Program (NTP) Emerald Award for Outstanding Directly Observed Treatment Strategy (DOTS) Facility, while Barotac Nuevo also got similar award but for its excellence in the implementation of Integrated Tuberculosis Information System.

In terms of Family Health & Nutrition Program, Iloilo was hailed for having the highest coverage of measles rubella and oral polio vaccine mass immunization in the region (97% or 213,645 children) in 2014.

Lastly, the Municipality of Calinog was adjudged as Regional Orally-Fit Community and Dr. Lucia Palma, also from Calinog, as Regional Orally-Fit Health Worker. (Jezza A. Nepomoceno/Capitol News)

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