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SOCIAL SCIENCE AND IMMUNIZATION RESEARCH PROJECT
Project Director:          Pilar Ramos-Jimenez
Funding Agency:        Royal Tropical Institute

This project had three goals: 1) to determine the state’s perspective through its agencies and representatives of how it can sustain the high rate of immunization services to mothers and young children in the country; 2) to assess the clients’—i.e. mothers of preschoolers—perspectives of the need for and importance of immunization in the survival of their children; and 3) to undertake a policy analysis of the introduction of Hepatitis B vaccine in the Philippines from the chronological or historical perspective.

Specifically, the study sought to: a) determine the experiences of government entities, NGOs engaged in maternal and child health, peoples’ organizations, as well as international funding agencies, with the immunization program; b) assess current strategies to institute high immunization coverage by the different service provision agencies; c) determine strategies of National Immunization Days (NIDs) and link political will with the possible sustainability of NIDs; d) elicit the perceptions and attitudes of health providers regarding the institutionalization of NIDs; e) solicit suggestions/recommendations from the aforementioned sectors on how the immunization program can be sustained in the country; f) determine the perceptions and knowledge of the clients about immunization; g) determine immunization compliance from the clients’ perspective and the social and cultural factors affecting compliance to complete immunization; h) know what experiences the mothers and their young children have had with immunization, and how the mothers currently manage immunization side-effects at home; i) assess the communication network within the community; j) conduct a policy analysis of the entry of the Hepatitis B vaccine program from the historical perspective; and k) raise policy and programmatic issues as well as recommendations for an acceptable and appropriate immunization program within the primary health care program of the Philippines.

To obtain the foregoing objectives, the study utilized quantitative and qualitative methods, particularly document and literature review, key informant interview, household survey, focus group discussion, and case study.

Key words: immunization practices in the Philippines, state agencies, mothers and young children, National Immunization Days, Hepatitis B vaccine

 

THE ASIA AND PACIFIC REGIONAL NETWORK ON GENDER, SEXUALITY AND REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH AND FORA ON THE TEACHING OF HEALTH SOCIAL SCIENCE CONFERENCE
Project Director:          Pilar Ramos-Jimenez
Funding Agency:        The Ford Foundation

The Asia and Pacific Regional Network on Gender, Sexuality, and Reproductive Health (APNET) and Fora on the Teaching of Health Social Science was held in Montebello Hotel in Cebu City from January 8 to 13, 1996. The conference was attended by health social scientists, health scientists and practitioners as well as representatives of women’s organizations from 11 countries in the Asia and Pacific region, particularly Bangladesh, China, India, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Pakistan, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Vietnam. 

The goal of APNET was to provide a forum for the exchange of related information pertinent to the topic and to bring out important issues within policy and programmatic relevance. 

The fora on the teaching of health social science sought to examine and to develop systematic and more concerted strategies that could enrich and promote this area of endeavor. The conference, meanwhile, sought to: 1) review the situation of gender, sexuality, and reproductive health as well as the teaching of health social science in 11 Asia and Pacific countries; 2) identify regional patterns or trends and issues in the foregoing areas; and 3) recommend mechanisms for collaboration and partnership in the Asia and Pacific region for the enhancement of gender, sexuality and reproductive health as well as the teaching of health social science within and across countries in the region.

Key words: gender, sexuality, and reproductive health; Asia and Pacific region, health social science

 

SOCIO-CULTURAL DIMENSION IN THE PREVENTION AND CONTROL
OF REPRODUCTIVE TRACT INFECTIONS (INCLUDING STDS) AMONG WOMEN IN SELECTED PHILIPPINE URBAN POOR COMMUNITIES

Project Director:          Pilar Ramos-Jimenez
Funding Agency:        The Ford Foundation

This project sought to develop an awareness and understanding of the nature of RTIs in two Philippine urban poor communities, and to enable women and men in these areas to participate in the prevention, diagnosis, and management of these infections.  The project’s objectives were to: a) examine and analyze indigenous beliefs and practices that predispose the urban poor to reproductive tract infections (RTIs); b) assess the factors—cultural, economic, and social—that account for the occurrence and transmission of RTIs; c) mobilize urban poor women groups and men in the diagnosis and in the management of RTIs; d) establish an interdisciplinary advisory committee that would provide directions from the inception, implementation, and completion of the project; e) conduct a clinical assessment among consenting women in two urban poor communities to determine the prevalence of gynaecological diseases, and to provide appropriate treatment and referrals for the management of RTIs; f) sensitize allopathic and traditional health care providers within the vicinity of the urban poor communities about RTIs, and to develop their capacity to respond to them appropriately among urban poor women and men; and g) involve the urban poor and health providers in the development of RTI materials that could be used in the training of health providers, health and social science students, and urban poor communities.

The research undertook an examination of the behavioral patterns, beliefs, and practices that may provide inputs to the development of training materials for the prevention and control of RTIs. The focus was on risk behavior, especially when related to sexual activity, unsafe abortion, vaginal medications, contraception, and pregnancy, as well as delivery practices. Furthermore, clinical examinations for gynaecological diseases among urban poor women were undertaken to determine the incidence of such diseases, and to find appropriate strategies to treat and control such infections.

The project sites were the city of Muntinlupa in Metro Manila and the city of Cebu in the Visayan islands.  One urban poor community with 500 or more households in each area willing to participate in the project was chosen per site.

Key words: reproductive tract infections (RTIs), urban poor, indigenous practices, gynaecological diseases, traditional health care providers

 

SUPPORT FOR RESEARCH, TRAINING, AND NETWORKING IN PARTICIPATORY UPLAND MANAGEMENT IN THE PHILIPPINES
Project Director:          Robert C. Salazar
Funding Agency:        The Ford Foundation

The funding support was for two major projects managed by SDRC, namely, the Participatory Uplands Management Program (PUMP) and the Philippine Uplands Resource Center (PURC).

PUMP provided technical support and research to government agencies, non-government organizations, and community-based groups in the formulation of policies, management of programs, and implementation and review of projects relevant to upland development.  In 1993 and 1994, PUMP undertook research along three major interrelated areas: a) Local Governments and the Upland Environment; b) Community-Based Resource Management Policies and Programs; and c) Research and Extension Methodologies.

On the other hand, PURC worked in the areas of library resources and services, material development, and information and networking services.  Among PURC’s major objectives were to: a) provide more efficient and effective library services that could serve a wider clientele; b) produce more popular, user-friendly, and action-oriented materials such as folios, primers, and sourcebooks, especially for non-government organizations and people’s organizations; and c) strengthen networks and linkages between and among the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Upland Non-government Organizations, People’s Organizations, and other sectors involved in upland development.

Key words: participatory uplands management, local governments, research and extension methodologies, library resources

 

EVALUATION OF THE COMMUNITY-BASED CONSERVATION
AND ENTERPRISE PROGRAM FOR INDIGENOUS COMMUNITIES IN PALAWAN

Project Directors:        Robert C. Salazar and Ma. Victoria M. Sabban
Funding Agency:        World Wildlife Fund, Inc. (WWF)

In support of the initiatives of a consortium of non-government and people’s organizations formed to address the issues of indigenous land and resource rights, ecological conservation, and local enterprise development in Palawan, technical assistance was provided in the monitoring and evaluation component of the “Community-based Conservation and Enterprise Program for Indigenous Cultural Communities in Palawan.”

The project began with the goal of developing and strengthening the capabilities of the consortium to manage community-based enterprises, promote the sustainable use of natural resources, and contribute to biodiversity conservation in Palawan. From this goal, project implementation intended to focus on the 4 K’s: Karapatan, Kapaligiran at Kabuyahan para sa mga Katutubo ng Palawan (Social Equity for the Indigenous Peoples of Palawan) through economic security and recognition of their ancestral domain.

The project monitoring and evaluation focused on the description and analysis of the effects of community livelihood enterprise activities on indigenous social, economic, and cultural systems. Specifically, SDRC a) designed a participatory monitoring and evaluation system to be used by the consortium’s local researchers; b) conducted baseline and end-of-project studies on the socioeconomic component of the project; c) conducted periodic assessments of the project’s socioeconomic component; and d) trained two local researchers on participatory research, monitoring and evaluation methods.

From the initial data gathered from the two pilot sites, it was recommended that project management consider some mechanisms that will eventually lead to: a) increased information flow on project objectives and activities from the implementers to local associations, as well as the rest of the community members; b) a review of existing NTFP trading policies that appear to inhibit the participation of more community members; c) more support to build the local associations’ capability to manage their own NTFP gathering, marketing, and regeneration activities; and d) institutionalization of community-level mechanisms to encourage transparency and closer community monitoring of the NTFP harvesting and marketing activities.

Key words: indigenous communities in Palawan, land and resource rights, ecological conservation, local enterprise development, monitoring and evaluation systems

 

A METRO MANILA-WIDE SURVEY ON PUBLIC ISSUES AND VOTING BEHAVIOR
Project Director:          Ronald D. Holmes
Funding Agency:        Renato Velasco

The project, conducted during the first two weeks of April 1995, sought to generate the Metro Manila public’s perception and opinion of current critical issues, particularly the Flor Contemplacion issue, and the correlation between their opinion on the selected issues and their prospective voting behavior, particularly with respect to the senatorial contest.

Covering all 17 cities and municipalities of the National Capital Region, the project employed a probability cluster sampling design. It used the personal interview technique in conducting the survey, which was divided into two parts. The first part was designed to generate a nominal profile of the respondents, particularly with regard to their sex, income, and age attributes. The second part of the survey contained five questions that measured the respondents’ awareness of a specific issue (i.e. the Contemplacion case), their outlook on the case, and the possible effect of the case on their prospective voting behavior.

As determined by the survey, almost all of the respondents were aware of the Contemplacion issue, with more than a majority holding the opinion that the case reflects government’s lack of protection of overseas contract workers (OCWs). Furthermore, more than 80 percent of the respondents believed that the government’s response to the case was delayed. Finally, more than half (54%) of the total respondents affirmed that the case would affect their voting decision.

The last question of the survey pertained to the preferences of the respondents among the party senatorial candidates if the elections were held at that point.  The results revealed a 7-3-2 outcome, with seven slots going to the dominant LAKAS-LABAN Coalition, three to the Nationalist People’s Coalition, and two to the People’s Reform Party. It is significant to note that more than half (56%) of the respondents articulated from zero up to only six names. This percentage could be referred to as the completely or significantly undecided electorate at this point.

Key words: Metro Manila, voting behavior, public perception, overseas contract workers (OCWs), Flor Contemplacion

 

NEEDS ASSESSMENT ON WOMEN’S REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH
IN A SELECTED COMMUNITY IN RIZAL PROVINCE

Project Director:          Trinidad S. Osteria
Funding Agency:        Reproductive Health Care Center, Philippine General Hospital

This study is an assessment of the reproductive health concerns of women in a selected community in Rizal province, in an effort to evolve a community-based reproductive health program.  Specifically, its objectives were to: a) assess the levels of knowledge, attitude, and practice of family planning as well as contraceptive prevalence in the selected community; b) determine the reproductive history, childhood mortality and health seeking behavior related to reproduction; c) take stock of reproductive health infrastructure available in the community as perceived by the women; d) determine appropriate intervention strategies that can be sustained on a long-term basis; and e) examine the prospect of involvement of women in reproductive health programs.

The findings of the study provided insights into the possibilities of a community-based reproductive health program.  The trends determined by the data showed a high level of knowledge of family planning among women who participated in the study. The study also found a high level of contraceptive prevalence in both ever users and current users of contraception.  However, a significant proportion of users of traditional methods—i.e. national family planning and withdrawal—was found among them.  The study found that non-users intended to use a family planning method—specifically, a modern contraceptive—in the future; that a sizeable proportion of women who had ever given birth had at least one miscarriage; and that there was a high rate of childhood mortality.  A large majority of the ever pregnant women in the study were also found to have sought prenatal care services from professional health providers.

The assessment also revealed that there is a need to address inadequacies such as lack of supplies and health personnel. Moreover, most respondents apparently only relied on the services of the Barangay Health Station, which encountered problems with family planning services due to irregular and limited supplies of contraceptives.  Finally, the study found that the majority of women in the community were not aware of a family planning and reproductive health program that would address the inadequacies and problems of the existing facilities cited above.

Key words: reproductive health, family planning, community-based programs, health providers, contraceptive use

 

ASSESSMENT OF QUALITY OF CARE IN FAMILY PLANNING SERVICES
IN SELECTED DELIVERY POINTS IN THE PHILIPPINES

Project Director:          Trinidad S. Osteria
Funding Agency:        United Nations Fund for Population Assistance (UNFPA)

This study attempted to assess the quality of care in family planning service delivery in selected service points in the country by considering the various dimensions of the issue from both the providers’ and clients’ perspectives.

The objectives of the evaluation were to: a) describe the availability, function, and quality of family planning activities in a representative sample of service delivery points in the country; b) analyze the relationship between subsystem functioning and the quality of services provided and received; and c) evaluate the programmatic impact of the provision of quality services on clients’ satisfaction and contraceptive use dynamics.

Recommended action for improving quality of care included basic training on the use of quality of care indicators for assessment of family planning service delivery; provision of adequate and appropriate IEC materials at the SDP with the language that is acceptable to the community; closer interaction between NGOs and LGUs for mutually supportive activities; and refresher training to providers for screening and closer interaction.

Recommendations for policy development included strengthening the link between community and clinic-based strategies incorporation of quality of care in training of family planning cadres; strengthening the community-based provider in terms of training, supply provision, linkage with clinics, and supervision; and integration of family planning information into reproductive health and safe motherhood education modalities.

Possible improvements in operations research were suggested in a review of time allocation of staff, including CBDs in service delivery; use of records for improvement of programs; analysis of current information and education materials in terms of their acceptability, feasibility and effectiveness; consideration of effects of provider bias on choice and continuation of contraceptive use; and consideration of effect of clients’ choice on use and continuation of methods.

Key words: quality of care, family planning service delivery, service providers, client satisfaction, reproductive health and safe motherhood education 

 

A RESEARCH PRACTICUM ON POPULATION AND HEALTH
Project Director:          Trinidad S. Osteria
Funding Agency:        United States Agency for International Development

The practicum on population and health research had the objectives of: a) promoting the use of research as a management tool within population and health programs; 2) providing the mechanisms to enable health and population practitioners to develop effective programs based on their research findings; and c) enabling program managers to select specific programs utilizing research strategies to improve the operations of population and health programs.

During the agency/community immersion of fellows, a thematic approach was taken to permit a thorough analysis of a specific aspect of the health and population program using a multi-focal perspective.  Focusing on the Quality of Services approach (population and health-related), three vantage points were considered: a) program planning and administration (policy, logistics, communications, and education); b) service provision; and c) evaluation.

Agencies tapped for the immersion were the Department of Health (Central, Regional, Provincial, Municipal, and Barangay Units); the Population Commission and its local satellites; non-government organizations involved in health and population work; local government units; hospitals; population research centers; academic institutions; and legislature (senate and congress).

Key words: Department of Health, population and health, management tools, Quality of Services approach, community immersion

 

 



 

 

 

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