Regional Unified Health Research Agenda (RUHRA) developed through multi-stakeholders consultation

  • by Carlson Dave Bolinto
  • May 19, 2017
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Research plays an essential role in the development of health services, the wellbeing of people, and the country. The National Unified Health Research Agenda (NUHRA), mandated by the Philippine National Health Research System (PNHRS), and the Regional Unified Health Research Agenda (RUHRA) serve as templates in the conduct of health researches for the country and the region respectively. Through the initiation of the Department of Science and Technology-Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (DOST-PCHRD) and its partner organizations, the Regional Stakeholders Consultation was conducted on the 11th and 12th of May, 2017 held at El Cielito Inn, North Drive, Baguio City. 

This two-day consultation was conducted primarily to empower the local stakeholders especially those coming from the LGUs and NGOs in developing the RUHRA for the period 2017- 2022. The main activities of the consultation are: to identify health research areas in the region; to formulate the criteria for prioritization; and to generate a list of health research priorities for the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR).      

Engr. Nathaniel Vincent Lubrica (Research Management Committee Chair, CRHRDC) conveyed the welcoming remarks. Dr. Joseph Oraňo (Alliance for Improving Health Outcomes – AIHO) presented an overview of the NUHRA, AIHO, and activities of the consultation. Dr. Miguel Antonio Salazar (Cluster Head, AIHO) discussed Technical Papers focusing on the framework on health, research, and socio-development of the Philippines. Mr. Teddy Dizon (Regional Assistant, AIHO) presented the current situation of health and research in CAR along with the opportunities for its development. The representatives from AIHO operated as the overall facilitators and moderators during the consultation. Representatives from PCHRD in the person of Mr. Paul Ernest de Leon (OIC, Research and Management Division), who introduced the PNHRS and the NUHRA, and Ms. Paula de Leon (Representative to the region) were also present. Our very own Dr. Raymundo Rovillos (CRHRDC Chair) and Ms. Maria Rowena Madarang (Regional Coordinator, CRHRDC) also participated in the deliberations. Ms. Madarang concluded the consultation and gave the closing remarks on the second day.

The consultation provided a vast opportunity to improve the health outcomes and wellbeing of the region through research by pursuing the health concerns from the grassroots level. Although there were minor problems encountered regarding the technical processes, significant discussions and suggestions by the plenary contributed to the development of the RUHRA. The newly generated RUHRA by the stakeholders will still be subject for approval by the Board Members of the Consortium which will eventually be implemented in the region:

1   HEALTH SERVICE DELIVERY AND INFORMATION SYSTEMS                       a. Effectiveness
b. Accessibility
c. Policy Implication (Magna Carta)
d. Impact of HFEP to Health Outcomes
e. Feasibility Study on Maternity Care Package in RHU    and BHS
f. ICT for Health   
– Unified Health Information Systems for all Health      Programs at all levels from Barangay to National      Level)
g. Effectiveness of ICT for Health
h. Data Analytics    
– Data Privacy
2   INDIGENOUS PEOPLE’S HEALTH             a. Survey and Ethno-documentation of IP’s Knowledge     and Practices (Baseline Studies)
b. Cultural Sensitivity and Competence of Healthcare     Providers
c. Betel Nut Chewing Practices (Moma)
d. Cross-Cultural Intercept of IP Health Practices and     Western Medicine
b. Impact to Health Service Delivery and Referral System
c. Disaster Risk Reduction in CAR
d. Resilience of Healthcare Facilities and Communities e. Product Development for Emergency Food Relief
4 HEALTH POLICY, RESEARCH AND GOVERNANCE                     a. Budget Appropriation and Utilization
b. Neo-liberalization and Public Health
c. Implementation of Magna Carta
d. National Planning Standards (Appropriateness to the Region)
e. Evaluation of Joint Memorandum Circular: Guidelines of Basic Health Services for Indigenous Cultural Communities
f.  Health Researches and the Free Prior Informed     Consent (FPIC)
g. Defining the Domains of Indigenous People’s Knowledge  
   – Repeat Pregnancy
b. Adolescent Reproductive Health
c. STI, HIV, and AIDS
6 MATERNAL, NEONATAL AND CHILD HEALTH           a. KAP Survey on Blood Donation
b. Prevalence of Uterine Fetal Deaths (Documentation)
c. Renal Disease in Children (Evaluation)
d. Children’s Sensory Health
e. Oral Health    
– Evaluation of Dental Health Practices
7 HUMAN RESOURCE FOR HEALTH     a. Impact of HRH Program especially in GIDA
b. Capacity Building
c. Impact of HRH Migration to Health Outcomes in CAR    
8 FOOD AND NUTRITION                 a. Food Safety
b. Food Product Development
c. Food Supplements
d. Nutrition Management
e. Nutrition Knowledge, Attitude, and Practices
f. Among 0 – 71-year old in GIDA
g. Evaluation of Nutrition Education and Promotion     Program (Community-based Setting)
b. Hilot
c. Acupuncture
d. Traditional Healers
10 NON -COMMUNICABLE DISEASES (MENTAL HEALTH, SUBSTANCE ABUSE)                           a. Complications of Lifestyle Diseases
b. Lifestyle Diseases such as CVD, Cancer, Diabetes
c. Lifestyle Practices    
– Smoking    
– Alcohol
d. Mental Health     
– Suicide    
– Depression    
– PTSD    
– MHGAP    
– MHPSS    
– Health Facilities and Programs
e. Substance abuse    
– Governance Streamlining    
-Cost-effectiveness of Drug Evaluation Program (Evaluation)
11 FINANCIAL RISK PROTECTION             a. Evaluation of NBB
b. Awareness on PhilHealth BP
c. OOP
d. Diagnostic Package
e. Reimbursements
f. Evaluation of Community-Based Health Financing
g. Evaluation of PhilHealth Package Sustainability
– Access to safe water    
– Access and Utilization of Toilets
b. Pesticides
c. Effects of Mining
d. Pollution    
– Air    
– Noise
e. Cross-cultural Trend
f. Health Effects of Tourism
g. Healthcare waste management
h. Transportation    
– Road Safety, etc.
13 DRUG DISCOVERY AND DEVELOPMENT       a. Natural Products
b. Inventory/Characterization of Medicinal Plants in CAR
c. Expanded Indications for Synthetic Drugs
14 COMMUNICABLE DISEASES                 a. Tuberculosis    
– National TB Program Evaluation
– Prevalence    
– MDR-TB    
– TB in Children
b. Tropical Diseases    
– Vector-borne Disease    
– Parasitic Disease
15 HEALTH AND WELLBEING OF VULNERABLE GROUPS               a. Health of PWDs    
– Evaluation of Health and Social Services among PWDs
b. Health of Aging Population
c. Occupational Safety and Health     – Musculoskeletal Disorders    
– Effects of Mining    
– Vulnerable Sectors

With the current RUHRA for 2017 – 2022, the call for research proposals for possible funding is highlighted once again by the Consortium through its member institutions. The other stakeholders are highly encouraged to promote the appeal as well.



Carlson Dave Bolinto