By: Ma. Lourdes Bangan (Provincial Health Office)
The Provincial Health Office (PHO) recently conducted its first-ever Mass Media Communication Workshop last June 15, 2012 at Kammaranan Hall, Capitol Hills, Tuguegarao City. The workshop was conducted to prepare the PHO program coordinators for the airing of the television and radio shows of the Provincial Government dubbed as “Salun-at Ti Umili” or “Health of the People.”
The 40 participants included doctors, nurses, health educators and technical staff of PHO who are provincial coordinators of the various health programs of Cagayan. Experts were invited to tackle topics on TV and radio show production, mass media communication, grassroots intervention and a review on plan and accomplishment report writing.
The Salun-at Ti Umili is a comprehensive health promotion enhancement program for the grassroot communities of the province. It involves the use of multimedia such as print, TV, radio, interpersonal communication and other traditional media. This enhancement program was founded on the Kalusugan Pangkalahatan of the Aquino Health Agenda. It is also anchored on Governor Alvaro T. Antonio’s agenda for “kalusugan,” which focuses on reaching the marginalized folks through improved health facilities and communication systems.
According to Dr. Marcos M. Mallillin, PHO Officer, health promotion is such a crucial part in the public health program because of its huge impact in empowering the people towards leading healthier lives. “Considering the universal problem on limited health personnel and medical facilities, strengthening health promotion will efficiently manage the resources of both people and the government. If the people are better informed of their health, illness will be prevented. Thus, expenses for hospitalization by the patient and time spent by health personnel on these medical procedures will be saved for more important endeavors,” he added.
The PHO health promotions started last year with capability-building trainings to Health Service Providers (HSPs) of the province namely doctors, nurses, midwives, barangay nutrition scholars and barangay health workers in Interpersonal Communication and Counseling (IPCC). According to Dr. Mallillin, these skills are the foremost requirements of the HSPs in effectively delivering various health messages to the people.
As of May 2012, the HSPs from the ten (10) priority municipalities were fully trained. The trainings were conducted in cooperation with the Center for Health Development- Cagayan Valley and USAID-HealthPRO. “Meanwhile, a roll-out for the non-priority municipalities is already planned in order to cover the whole province,” Mallillin added.
The Salun-at Ti Umili TV and radio show will be launched this coming July. Aside from TV and radio, PHO will also utilize social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter to widen the coverage of communication between PHO and the people. The TV program will be aired in RBC Cable every Wednesdays from 9:00-10:00 in the morning starting July 18. The TV show will be played by the local cable providers in the downstream municipalities a week after. The radio program is a simulcast of the RBC program via DZCV.
“With these preparations, the Provincial Health Office is optimistic in its goal of improving health promotion and communication through mass media, IPCC trainings and extensive grassroots level intervention which will consequently improve the over all health situation of Cagayan,” Dr. Mallillin said.