The Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (PCHRD) of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), with its thrust of developing and encouraging research activities, and in the interest of equity, organized the Regional Health Research and Development Consortia (RHRDC). The legal mandate of EVHRDC emanates from Article II, Section 13 of Republic Act 10532, otherwise known as “An Act Institutionalizing the Philippine National Health Research System”, which provides for the creation of regional health research systems “that shall mirror the PNHRS framework in all the regions of the country, forming a network of regional research consortia. Furthermore, the act also provides in addressing concerns relating to health research agenda, development of human resource in health research, conduct of researches, dissemination of research results, research data/products/services utilization, resource mobilization, leadership, and management.
Because of the diverse as well as specific health needs of each region, Regional Unified Health Research Agenda (RUHRA) is developed along with the NUHRA. The NUHRAs influences the RUHRAs, and vice versa, considering the fact that the strong link between the national and regional research priorities should remain the same. Furthermore, the RUHRA is designed by each region reflecting the regional needs and health research priorities. As part of the development of the RUHRA, a regional consultation is conducted to serve as a venue for key regional stakeholders to provide their inputs.
In 1983, DOST 8 together with the DOH 8 organized the Regional Health Research and Development Consortia (RHRDC) 8, however, due to administrative problems it became dormant for some time. It was only revitalized in 1994 and since then, the consortium became active in conducting researches and capability building activities. It was in 2002 that the consortium adopted the name of EVHRDC.
Like any other RHRDCs, EVHRDC became the structure through which PCHRD's Institution Development Programs was implemented and became the mechanism that encouraged and promoted health research activities in Region VIII. It should be able to formulate/disseminate the regional and national health agenda, develop/review research proposals (technical and ethical aspects), implement projects, disseminate research results, develop and manage databases of researches/researchers mobilize resources of member agencies (networking) and manage RHRDC/EVHRDC activities.
Different member-institutions coming from the government, non-government organizations, private sectors, medical societies and other stakeholders engaged in health research in the region composes EVHRDC. The membership is represented by the Directors/Heads of agencies or their officially designated representatives.
Presently, the EVHRDC Executive Committee is chaired by the Regional Director of DOH 8 and co-chaired by DOST 8 Regional Director with Heads of 5 member agencies (NEDA, SSCHS, UPM-SHS, VSU, and CHED) as members. The Secretariat is housed at the DOST 8 with a regular staff assigned as coordinator backed up by a project staff. There is also one regular staff from DOH 8 assigned as Research Coordinator assisting the chair. The Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (PCHRD) allocate funds for the operation of the consortium and both DOST8 and DOH 8 gave ample counterpart funds.