THE Department of Health-Regional Office VI (DOH-RO VI) recently held the Provincial Barangay Health Workers’ (BHW) Congress for Iloilo Province to recognize the effort and contribution of BHWs as frontline partners in the achievement of the Universal Health Care or Kalusugan Pangkalahatan (KP).
More than 170 BHWs, City and Municipal Health Officers (C/MHOs), Rural Health Midwives (RHM), and heads of the Committee on Health of the Sangguniang Bayan from the province’s 42 municipalities and one component city attended the activity which was held on December 14, 2015 in Iloilo City.
The event was graced by Undersecretary Vicente Belizario, Jr., head of the Office for Technical Services of DOH. He emphasized the important role that BHWs play in promoting healthy lifestyle and healthy food and drink choices in the community to combat the growing global trend of non-communicable diseases such as diabetes and hypertension.
To further equip health service personnel in the local level, the DOH distributed BP apparatus and glucometer for each of Iloilo province’s local government units. The distribution was led by Usec. Belizario along with DOH-RO VI Regional Director Dr. Marlyn W. Convocar, Assistant Regional Director Dr. Ma. Paz P. Corrales, Iloilo Governor Arthur Defensor, Sr., and Provincial Health Officer Dr. Patricia Grace Trabado.
Dr. Isidro Sia, General Director of the Philippine Institute of Traditional and Alternative Health Care, also lectured on a wide range of affordable, accessible and effective traditional and alternative health care options available in the community. While Dr. Amalia Fernandez, Medical Specialist I of the Philippine Health Insurance Corp. (PhilHealth), clarified issues relative to PhilHealth care package and benefits.
The recently-published BHW Manual and Pocket Handbook were likewise presented during the Congress. The Manual provides BHWs an overview of the many programs and services of DOH and their respective key messages for dissemination to the community.
A separate BHW Congress for the provinces of Guimaras and Negros Occidental had been conducted early this December.
Based on DOH-RO VI data, there are 26,164 accredited BHWs in the region. Of these, 9,512 are in Iloilo Province.