MANILA -- A region in Italy, through its Accademia Nazionale delle Scienze, has offered a partnership with the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) in liver research, Secretary Fortunato dela Peña said over the weekend.

Dela Peña recently visited Trieste, a region in Italy, which he described as having a dense network of academic and scientific institutions.

"The World Academy of Sciences (TWAS) is very famous (in Trieste). We already have a partnership with them, particularly (involving) UP (University of the Philippines)," dela Peña told the Philippine News Agency (PNA).

TWAS is a global science academy promoting scientific capacity and sustainable development in developing countries. Trieste, according to dela Peña, is a good place for science and technology as there are many institutions and startup companies there.

"We will focus on liver research. Jaundice, for instance, has a long-term effect on babies if not treated right away," he said.

Jaundice is caused by a buildup of waste material in the blood; an inflamed liver or obstructed bile duct.

"Liver cancer is also among the leading cause of deaths in the Philippines," dela Peña added.

The partnership of DOST and Italy further aims to develop a diagnostic device that could intervene in the development of liver cancer, the DOST chief said.

Two students from UP Manila will fly there by November. They are currently taking PhD sandwich program, which means they could spend their PhD training abroad for about a year, dela Peña explained.

Another two PhD students and at least one post-doctoral fellow will be sent to Italy soon, he added.

Italy's request, according to him, was to have a data lab in the Philippines.

Meanwhile, dela Peña said Italy is looking for other partnerships with the DOST in the future.

"They will conduct a European Scientific Forum in July, and they invited the DOST to see what (the Italian government) has to offer. There will be exhibits, forum to be participated by at least 60 countries," he remarked.

Dela Peña said he is happy with what he saw from Trieste, and the partnership offer.

He will send three council heads from the Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development; Philippine Council for Industry, Energy and Emerging Technology Research and Development; and Philippine Council for Health Research and Development, to meet with small technology companies there, he said. (PNA)

 

 

-By Ma. Cristina Arayata

 

On 23-25 October 2019, The Department of Science and Technology – Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (PCHRD) together with the Zamboanga Consortium for Health Research and Development (ZCHRD) conducted an Institutional visit among its member institution namely JH Cerilles State College and Saint Columban College in Pagadian City, Zamboanga Del Sur; and MSU-Buug Campus, Zamboanga Sibugay Province.

The visit aims to inform member institutions of what PCHRD is showcasing especially its programs, services, projects and priority activities. and to clear out the common misconception that the conduct of health research is limited to Medical Doctors, Health Professionals, and other Allied Health Workers, rather it can also be conducted by Researchers in general who has health-research studies or studies that has a health component.

Ms. Marie Jeanne Berroya, Senior Science Research Specialist of PCHRD and Regional Project Officer of ZCHRD pointed out the importance of acquiring research clearances before funding and implementation of a research study. This includes Technical Clearance to ensure the technical and scientific soundness of the research study. For research studies involving human participants, an Ethical clearance, issued by an accredited Research Ethics Committee is a must as mandated by the Philippine Health Research Ethics Board. Special clearance may also be necessary such as the National Commission on Indigenous People (NCIP) clearance for papers involving Indigenous People or Indigenous Cultural Communities (ICC); Bureau of Animal Industry (BAI) clearance for studies that involve animals; and Gratuitous Permit and Biosafety Clearance.

Mr. Halid Tamano, Science Research Specialist I, presented ZCHRD as the Regional Health Research and Development Consortium for the Zamboanga Peninsula and Isabela City, Basilan. He stressed the duties and responsibilities as well as the benefits of Consortium Member Institutions, which includes but are not limited to resource sharing, research mentoring, capacity building activities, and research funding.

Ms. Angeline Hipolito. Project Assistant-II, of DOST IX, presented and encouraged researchers to avail of funding offered by DOST IX and DOH IX for research proposals.  The Regional Research Fund (RRF) provided by the PCHRD is a fund intended for budding researchers to encourage them to be actively involved in health research activities without having to compete with more experienced researchers, at the same time a stepping stone to a larger scale of research project that may be funded by DOH, CHED, and other national and international funding agencies. On the other hand, the Department of Health – Health System Research Fund (DOH-HSRF) Initiative provides support for research projects in Region IX targeting its priority areas on Leadership and Governance, Service Delivery, Information System, Health Human Resource, Access to Medicine and Health Financing. Both funding source grants research projects with a budgetary requirement of up to 500,000.00php. Regular employees and medical residents with the supervision of their respective departments of a ZCHRD member institution are qualified to avail of the funds.

ZCHRD conducts Strategic Planning for CY 2020-2023

The Zamboanga Consortium for Health Research and Development (ZCHRD) conducted its Strategic Planning for the CY 2020-2023 last 21-22 October 2019 at Kamagong Hall, LM Metro Hotel, Zamboanga City. Apart from the Consortium’s Core Group and Committee Members, present during the said event were Ms. Merlita Opena, Chief of the Research Information, Communication, and Utilization Division; Ms. Carinna Rebulanan, Chief of the Institutional Development Division; Ms. Marie Jeanne Berroya, Ms. Ma. Violeta Intia and Ms. Ullyann Garcia, Senior Science Research Specialists of the Department of Science and Technology - Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (DOST - PCHRD).

ZCHRD recognizes the importance of strategic planning as it provides a sense of direction and outlines specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and time-bound goals of the Consortium. The Strategic planning activity was done to set Consortium priorities, strengthen its operations, ensure that Consortium and Committee Members are working toward common goals, establish agreement around intended outcomes/results, and assess and adjust the Consortium’s direction in response to revised PNHRS Strategy Map.

During the Strategic Planning, Mr. Halid Tamano, Consortium Secretariat presented the Consortium’s 2018-2019 Accomplishments as of September 2019. This includes the review of research proposals submitted for possible funding under RRF and capacity building activities such as the Basic Research Methods Training, Basic Research Ethics Training and Advance Training on SOP writing, and application for PHREB RERC Accreditation, among others. Ms. Merlita Opena presented the revised PNHRS Strategy Map, which was the output of a series of consultative meetings conducted by PCHRD among the 17 Regional Health Research and Development Consortia. Ms. Ma. Violeta Intia also presented HERDIN+ (Health Research and Development Information Network plus), which is an upgraded version of HERDIN, an online portal that provides easy management and access to health research and related information. Reports generated from the HERDIN+ will be the bases for assessing the health of the PNHRS.

Mr. Ricardo Apolinario III, Consortium Coordinator, facilitated the Strategic Planning and grouped the committee members into four according to the DOST Perspectives, namely Customer Perspective, Process Perspective, Learning and Growth Perspective and Financial Perspective. This was done to update, align and harmonize the Consortium’s Strategic Plan for CY 2020 – 2023 with the Department of Science and Technology. The workshop’s output is a balanced scorecard, which will be used to assess and evaluate the Consortium’s targets and accomplishments for CY 2020-2023, with consideration that effective strategic planning articulates not only where an organization is going and the actions needed to make progress, but also how it will know if it is successful.

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