Koronadal City---With their invaluable support to the nutrition and health program, the Provincial Government of South Cotabato acknowledged the untiring efforts of the Barangay Health Workers (BHW) and Barangay Nutrition Scholars (BNS) in a separate awarding ceremony. More than 200 BHW who served for 30 years and above were given a plaque of recognition and a cash incentive for their help in the implementation of the various health program at the barangay level. Enriqueta Castor, Tboli BHW Association President and who been serving for 37 years, has no plans of retiring. "Until death do us part for being a BHW," she said laughing," Castor said. Meanwhile, BNS Virgenette Jickain of Barangay Palkan in Polomolok, is the most outstanding BNS in South Cotabato. Jickain received her plaque of recognition during the BNS Congress. Jickain is also the official nominee of the province for the Regional Search for Most Outstanding BNS. "I never expect to receive an award because for me it's part of my work," Jickain said, thanking the support of the barangay council and the barangay midwife. The Provincial Health Board pushed for the approval to institutionalize the incentives and benefits of BHW. Gov. Daisy Avance-Fuentes announced that a final draft was already endorsed by the Health Board to the Provincial Board for legislative action. "This will help you secure your post in the barangay," Fuentes said.
Koronadal City---Local health officials work double time to stop the transmission of rabies from dogs to human as Provincial Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit (PESU) report an alarming increase in South Cotabato since last year. Dr. Flora Bigot, Provincial Veterinary Officer-In-Charge, a Provincial Rabies Prevention and Control Committee was created to ensure the implementation of the Anti-Rabies Act. "The comprehensive plan for rabies elimination will serve as a guide of the government key players to achieve the rabies-free South Cotabato," Bigot said. Meanwhile, Dr.Alah Baby Vingno, Assistant Provincial Health Officer, admitted that the access of patients to Animal Bite Treatment Center is one of the major problems as to rabies on the human is a concern. "Only a few towns have established accredited government ABTC," Vingno said. John Codilla, Rabies Program Coordinator, said as of October, six local government units opened up their ABTC. With this, DOH will provide a percentage of the supply of vaccines while the LGU allocates the necessary remaining vaccines. "We are giving our technical assistance to LGUs so that they could establish their ABTC the soonest possible time," Codilla said. PESU recorded 17 cases of rabies in South Cotabato as of October 14, 2017. The report showed 750 percent higher compared to the number of the same period in 2016. Most of the victims are children but a notable number of the cases by age group is age 31-40 with five cases. Thirteen cases were bitten by unvaccinated dogs by which eight were positive for rabies. The identified rabid dogs came from the City of Koronadal and the towns of Lake Sebu, Banga, Norala, Sto. Nino and Polomolok. However, areas with highest reported human death cases were in Lake Sebu (5) [...]
Koronadal City---Gov. Daisy Avance-Fuentes is set to receive the Seal of Good Local Governance (SGLG) in an awarding ceremony on November 28 at The Manila Hotel. Along with other South Cotabato, the DILG Bureau of Local Government Supervision will distribute the most coveted seal to performing local government units. In Region 12, aside from South Cotabato, the province of North Cotabato is also an awardee. According to the DILG list of awardees, three cities and nine towns are also recipients of the SGLG. In South Cotabato, the towns of Tupi and Suralah are SGLG recipients for years now. Gov. Daisy Avance-Fuentes said the seal is a sign that the province is on the right track in governance. "This is a reminder to employees to continue to reach your target," Fuentes said. With the seal, the provincial government employees are also assured to receive productivity bonus.
Koronadal City---The biggest surgical caravan of the Department of Health is moving to the province of South Cotabato before the month of November ends where 250 local residents are assured of a minimal fee surgical operation. Dr. Rogelio Aturdido, Provincial Health Officer, said the health caravan will provide quality service. "This is a great opportunity for our indigent residents to avail of the surgical operation with a minimal fee," Aturdido said. The caravan travels around the Philippines to provide health service to the poorest of the poor who could not afford to pay surgical expenses. However, local government units are tapped to shoulder the other medical expenses of the patient to ensure that he will be freed from financial woes. The medical caravan is in partnership with South Cotabato Provincial Hospital and the Cotabato Sanitarium. Aturdido said the government allocated three billion pesos under the 2017 General Appropriations Act for the surgical caravan. The surgical caravan has already visited the provinces of North Cotabato and Sarangani.
Koronadal City---South Cotabato eyes the establishment of Nutri Village, a community which caters the rehabilitation of malnourished children in a community setting with clinical intervention, as a strategy to ensure the full recuperation of children with Severely Acute Malnutrition case. Maria Ana Uy, Provincial Social Welfare and Development Officer-In-Charge, pushed for a public-private partnership (PPP) in this newest proposal. "An ideal location for a nutri-village is near a hospital or a Rural Health Unit so that it is easy for the doctors to monitor the malnourished child," Uy explained. She suggested that a nutri-village will be put at the compound of the Upper Valley Community Hospital in Suralah, a strategic catchment area because of its proximity to the towns of Lake Sebu and Tboli where there is high prevalence rate of malnutrition. "We are also preparing to present the concept paper to LGU Tboli," Uy said. The nutri-village is a compound where a family with a malnourished child could stay for six months while the child is undergoing medical attention. The nutri-houses in the village serve as a temporary home for the family where there is enough space for gardening and poultry raising. "During our cross visit in Davao region, we found out that one family gets their livelihood from the garden since they sell the vegetable to the hospital kitchen," Uy said. In 2016, at least 3, 000 underweight children are reported. There are 602 severely underweight children in South Cotabato, according to the Situation Analysis Report. However, the prevalence of underweight preschool children went down from 7.25 percent in 2014 to 5.15 percent in 2016. Meanwhile, a notable decrease in the prevalence of underweight school children was reported from 13.26 percent in 2014 [...]
Koronadal City---The Provincial Social Welfare and Development Office (PSWDO) visited a half-way home for former rebels in Mati, Davao Oriental to study its management and operation as the province plans to construct a similar center. Maria Ana Uy, PSWD Officer-In-Charge, said her group will facilitate a meeting with Governor Daisy Avance-Fuentes to present their learnings during a cross-visit recently. "We need to have a regular employee to manage the center," Uy shared in an interview. The half-way home in Mati has been operating in the last 10 years wherein a former rebel stays in the center for six months for a series of activities before he/she will be integrated into the community. "This is to ensure that the integrees have no chance of returning to the revolutionary group," Uy said. The returnees will undergo training on livelihood and leadership. The Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) is ready to release a P5M financial assistance to an LGU that plans to construct a half-way home for former rebels. Recently, DILG issued guidelines for the construction of a halfway house in South Cotabato. Based on the criteria, DILG prioritizes the release of fund to LGU which has no presence of halfway house, availability of donated lot for the building, and the accessibility of functional skills training program. Uy said the site for the proposed halfway house is in Barangay Morales in the City of Koronadal, inside the Provincial PNP Compound. This year, seven former rebels received a P15, 000 financial assistance from the provincial government and four more are set to get a similar assistance before this year ends. The province also initiated a Former Rebel Congress to gather beneficiaries of the program in South Cotabato. [...]
Koronadal City---The Provincial Government of South Cotabato launches the 120-day supplementary feeding for the children of identified sitios with a high prevalence of malnutrition in a scheduled ceremony in various areas in the province this November. Food packs are being supplied by Hapag-Asa Integrated Nutrition Program, a partner of South Cotabato in the implementation of Good Nutrition. Maria Ana Uy, Provincial Social Welfare and Development Officer-In-Charge and Community Affairs Chief, said the ceremony commenced in two sitios in Barangay Poblacion, Lake Sebu. "We decided to give the first 60 days of food packs to the beneficiaries and we have installed a monitoring system to ensure the goods are not wasted," Uy said In cooperation with the Barangay Affairs Unit (BAU), a special unit under the governor's office, beneficiaries are being monitored by a Community Organizer. Jerry Gamo, BAU Chief, said the province provides food supplements to malnourished babies who are at risk of becoming severely malnourished. "Our office is focused on delivering services to sitios. This is to guarantee that government is felt even at the farthest part of our province because this is where our people who need our help," Gamo explained. The program will cater at least 1600 preschoolers, senior citizens and breastfeeding mothers from far-flung areas with high incidence of malnutrition. The towns of Banga, Lake Sebu, Norala, Polomolok, Sto. Nino, Suralah, Tantangan and Tupi are covered in the program, Uy said. Thirty sitios and puroks are covered by this special program. Manna packs are packed meal formula developed by food science and nutritionists to supplement nutritional needs and reduce problems with malnutrition. "We are grateful for our new partner in the nutrition program who joins our campaign to fight malnutrition," Uy [...]
Koronadal City---PhilHealth regional officials confirmed the P37.50 increase in monthly premium contribution starting January of next year. Dr. Grace Pamonag, Regional Vice President, said PhilHealth shall impose the 2.75 percent increase based on the monthly basic salary for all employed members in the formal economy. "This includes our kasambahay, family drivers, and sea-based overseas Filipino Workers and all employers in the government and private sectors," Pamonag said based on the circular. The increase is seen at P37.50 to be equally shared by the employer and the personal share of the member. Pamonag, however, said the adjustment covers the expansion for Z benefits and the medical check-up of members. "This is necessary to sustain the enhancement we have made and to further sustain the program," Pamonag stressed out. Meanwhile, PhilHealth released another circular that reminds local government units to ensure the coverage of directly-hired Job Orders (JOs) and Project-Based Contractors (PBCs). "LGU should provide funds for the social health insurance protection of their JO under the Group Enrollment scheme," Pamonag said. The circular applies to all national and local government offices including LGUs and Government Owned Corporation," Pamonag said. "This is to ensure that all our workers are members of PhilHealth," Pamonag said.
Koronadal City---The Provincial Government of South Cotabato accepted three former rebels (FR) who decided to go back to the mainstream community after living as members of a revolutionary group, Monday. Through the DILG’s Comprehensive Local Integration Program (CLIP), the former rebels will receive P50, 000 before this year ends. As an initial assistance to the FRs, Provincial Social Welfare and Development Office handed the P15, 000 livelihood assistance in a turn-over ceremony. Leonor Magbanua, DILG Provincial Director Representative, advised the recipients to make use of the financial assistance to start a small business. "Salamat sa kusang-loob nga pagbalik," she said. Maria Ana Uy, PSWD Officer-In-Charge, said the FRs have undergone the socio-economic interventions and capability building activities conducted by the Provincial Social Welfare and Development Office (PSWDO) before the assistance has been given to them. "Kamo na mismo sa inyo kaugalingon, maghimo pamaagi nga mangabuhi sang disente kay ang goyerno ari lang sa inyo para sa pagsuporta sang inyo pagpangabuhi sang maayo," Uy said. With the help of the 27th IB, Grace Rodel, CLIP Focal Person, said the provincial government profiled seven FRs this year. A scheduled turn-over of assistance will soon to happen. Major Esmundo Estores, 27th IB Executive Officer, said that after FR's decision to be part of a peaceful society, the government supports through aid in the renewal process of their lives. "Your freedom is the best gift for you this Christmas," Esmundo said.
Koronadal City---The Provincial Blood Council has settled possible issues and gaps in the formulation of its policy as SOuth Cotabato is moving up the creation of a local council to strengthen the coordination and networking of blood service facilities. Dr. Ala Baby Vingno, Assistant Provincial Health Officer, said her office gathered the members to finalize the policy which will be presented during the Provincial Health Board meeting. "We aimed that the council will be endorsed to the Sangguniang Panlalawigan so that the council will be operational next year," Vingno said. As an initial fund, the council proposes P200, 000. "The council will see to it that we have an effective, efficient and well-coordinated implementation of the voluntary blood donation program in the province," Vingno said.