ORMOC CITY – The Harmonised Initiatives of Media for the Spread of Good Nutrition in Region 8 (HIMSoG-8), the media-group partner of National Nutrition Council in Eastern Visayas, will coordinate first with the Mayor’s Office in local government units (LGUs) in its targeting for the Media-Nutrition Caravans for year 2019.

This came was consensus of the membership during a Program Implementation Review (PIR) of the group held on December 21, 2018 at the Sabin Resort Hotel, here. The one-day event headed by HIMSoG President Antonio Pueblos extended as well as 4th Quarter Meeting, 8th Anniversary and Christmas Party.

Every Year HIMSoG-8 conducts two Media-Nutrition Caravans to a chosen cluster of at least three localities in Region 8 that are noted for high incidence of malnutrition, and also with those outstanding good practices on nutrition program implementation. The caravan is a most favoured group activity, to first-hand seek out the rationale of the Nutrition Situation of the target locality--why it is lagging in health and nutrition. The practice is as well a measure to document the good practices of the localities which are doing well for other places to emulate.



For three consecutive years, VSU has registered a 100% passing rate in the Nursing Licensure Exam (NLE). This year, all ten takers successfully passed the nursing board.

As released by the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC), only 4,811 out of the 12,033 examinees passed the exam, garnering a 39.98% national average.

The University of Santo Tomas (UST) produced the topnotcher for this year’s nursing board, Jennifer Jacob Quirante, with a passing average of 87.80%. On top of that, UST landed the prime spot in the top performing school’s list, garnering a 100% passing rate, with all of its 337 takers passing the board.

The November 2018 NLE was administered at PRC testing centers in Manila, Baguio, Cagayan de Oro, Cebu, Davao, Iloilo, Legazpi, Lucena, Pagadian, Tacloban, Tuguegarao and Zamboanga on November 17 and 18, 2018.



Manila, Philippines – Researchers from the University of the Philippines – Manila (UP Manila) and the University of California, Davis (UC Davis) are developing better newborn hearing screening technologies, which will pave way for early detection of hearing impairment among Filipino infants.

The project Hearing for Life: Increasing the Rates of Newborn Hearing Screening with Novel Technologies and Telehealth (HeLe Project) is set to produce an innovative hearing screening device and telehealth technologies. This will include e-learning modules for training newborn hearing screeners and users, an electronic medical record module for newborn hearing screening, a tele-referral system, and a newborn hearing screening registry. These will allow community-based early hearing screening in Rural Health Units (RHUs) that are easily and locally accessible.

The HeLe Project is funded by the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) through the Philippine-California Advanced Research Institutes (PCARI) Project. The CHED-PCARI is a government initiative that aims to advance the country’s capacity for research and development by addressing societal-scale problems related to health innovation and translational medicine (HITM) and information infrastructure development (IID).

A 2013 study led by HeLe Project Head Dr. Charlotte Chiong, director of the Newborn Hearing Screening Reference Center (NHSRC) at the UP Manila National Institutes of Health found that “at least 8 profoundly hearing deaf babies are born every day in the Philippines or one deaf baby born every three hours”. Statistics, however, also shows that less than 10% of Filipino babies each year are screened for hearing loss due to limited number of facilities and the high cost of screening devices.

Lead Researcher Dr. Philip Fullante said the HeLe hearing screening device, together with the telehealth technologies, is envisioned to be a cost-effective model for conducting newborn hearing screening that will be affordable to the government. “This will enable the local government units to deploy the system to its regional health units and even barangay health centers, thus capturing close to 100%, if not all of the live births in the country for newborn hearing screening,” Fullante added.


Palo, Leyte – For the third year in-a-row the municipality of Caibiran in the island province of Biliran bagged the highest regional citation on nutrition, reaping the Green Banner Award as Regional Outstanding Municipality in tandem for its fourth year as Provincial Outstanding Municipality in Biliran Province which further elated the municipality to be awarded as one of the Consistent Regional Outstanding Winner Nutrition (CROWN) Awardee, awarded by National Nutrition Council (NNC) at the Philippine International Convention Center In Pasay City, Metro Manila. Another Provincial Green Banner Awardee this year is the town of Hinunangan of the province of Southern Leyte.

These are the top local government units (LGUs) in Eastern Visayas recognized for their outstanding performance in implementation of nutrition action plans in year 2017. They were bestowed the due honours in a Regional Nutrition Awarding Ceremony (RNAC) held on November 27, 2018 at The Oriental Hotel, Palo, Leyte. 

Dr. Catalino P. Dotollo Jr., Regional Nutrition Program Coordinator, said the Green Banner Award is the highest honour given to an LGU (municipality, city or province) for exemplary implementation and management of nutrition programs. The award is given to the first ranking municipality/city or province adjudged by the interagency Regional Nutrition Evaluation Team (RNET)--in recognition of their efficient and effective implementation of the Philippine Plan of Action for Nutrition (PPAN), he added.

Certificates of Appreciation were also awarded to NNC-8 partners in nutrition program implementation namely: the Regional Nutrition line agencies, Regional Nutrition Evaluation Team members, areas conducted with Monitoring and Evaluation of Local Level Plan Implementation (MELLPI), Nutrition Organizations, and Non-Government Organizations.

Awarded Regional Outstanding Barangay Nutrition Scholar (OBNS) this year was BNS Rhodora Lingatong of Barangay Triana, island-town of Limasawa, Southern Leyte in addition for her being the Outstanding Barangay Nutrition Scholar in said province. Another OBNS in the Province is BNS Bernardita F. Kuizon of Barangay Daanlungsod, Bato, Leyte.



The Eastern Visayas Health Research and Development Consortium (EVHRDC) together with the Department of Health Regional Office VIII (DOH RO8) conducted its 2018 Regional Health Research Symposium (RHRS) on November 13, 2018 at The Oriental Hotel, Palo, Leyte. This activity is the 1st Region-wide contest for Oral Research Paper Presentations and Poster Exhibits both for professional and undergraduate categories where modest cash prizes are given to the winners.

Dr. Minerva P. Molon, the Regional Director of DOH RO8, in her opening remarks, pointed out that this activity will not just promote the consortium activities but also to motivate researchers to do better in their research career so that communities could benefit from utilizing their research outputs.

“The theme of this year’s symposium addresses equity which is anchored on the research agenda and priorities in Eastern Visayas. I motivate interested parties to submit proposal with health-related researches for possible funding.”

Mr. Willard N. Riveral, Chair of EVHRDC Research Information Committee (RIC), introduced the presenters, guests and visitors from various state universities, public and private government agencies. There were a total of 78 participants who attended the symposium. The different committees of the consortium were also recognized as well as the EVHRDC staff, guests and speakers.

"Ceremonial opening of poster exhibit graced by Dr. Molon and guests”

Mr. Leonido Olobia, Research Program Coordinator and Chair of Research Management Committee, emphasized that this symposium is the first ever Regional Health Resarch Symposium in Eastern Visayas and through DOH and the collaboration of DOST-EVHRDC, this was made successful. Dr. Olobia also pointed out the purpose of this symposium.

On behalf of the DOH Region 8, I would like to thank the members of the consortium for making this symposium a successful one. The purpose of this activity is not just to promote the activities of the consortium but also to make use of the researches related to health because based on the review, there were a lot of talented researches from students to professional category here in Region 8.

Dr. Noel R. Juban, the keynote speaker of this year’s RHRS quoted “In order to try research, one should have a supporting environment. As a researcher, one should not end in presentation only; it has to be published in a journal for wide dissemination of such research.”

After review and evaluation, the following were announced as winners;


Oral Research Presentation Contest
Prof. Maricel A. Gomez, 1st Place Winner of Oral Research Presentation from Leyte Normal University delegates for Professional Category with research title: “Men Who Have Sex with Men: The Naked Truth Among Male College Students” Mr. Richard Luke R. Abletes, 1st Place Winner of Oral Research Presentation from Eastern Visayas State University delegates for Student Category with research title: “Participation and Problems Met in the Implementation of Zero Open Defecation Program in Selected Barangays of Salcedo, Eastern Samar”
Poster Exhibit Contest
Mr. Ginbert P. Cuaton, 1st Place Winner of Poster Exhibit Contest from Leyte Normal University delegates for Professional Category Ms. Renalyn M. Yabor, 1st Place Winner of Poster Exhibit Contest from Eastern Samar State University delegates for Student Category


Dr. Edgardo E. Tulin, Member of EVHRDC-EXECOM and Visayas State University (VSU) President, in his closing remarks, thanked the DOH and DOST through the EVHRDC Family in making this event a successful one. Dr. Tulin advised the young professionals to improve their research outputs to be utilized by the communities and make more health-related researches relevant in the future.

“With the active involvement of DOST and partner state universities and colleges, I’m sure we will be able to make more health researches relevant in the future in terms of the demands. I hope that those who were not able to get the awards, will do better next time because this is just part of making us aware on what research is all about. We say “Research is wealth”, thus we are encouraged to make our researches productive and beneficial to the health of human beings.”