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PIA Press Release

Negros Oriental marks Nutrition Month

By Rachelle M. Nessia

Dumaguete City (4 July) -- The Provincial Nutrition Committee in Negros Oriental has lined up several activities this month to celebrate the 34th Nutrition Month Celebration this year.

The celebration started on June 27 with a Nutri-Walk participated in by representatives from local government agencies. The walk started at 5:30 am from Rizal Boulevard and ended at the Freedom Park fronting the provincial Capitol, Dumaguete City.

The committee, led by Atty. Luisa A. Villegas as Deputy Chair and Provincial Nutrition Action Officer, held a kick-off ceremony in Manjuyod town on July 1.

A Kapihan forum will be held on July 16 at the Administration Building of the Provincial Health Office (IPHO) and will focus on this year's celebration's theme of "Sa Wastong Nutrisyon ni Mommy, Siguradong Healthy si Baby."

On July 26, a Nutri-Run Contest will be done in front of Bethel Guesthouse.

The celebration will culminate on July 31 with simple ceremonies to be held in front of IPHO's administrative building.

This year's celebration focuses on the importance of proper health and good nutrition among pregnant and would-be pregnant women for improved nutrition of infants.

Reports from the National Nutrition Council disclosed that more than a hundred mothers die for every 100,000 live births in the Philippines with about 30 infants per 1,000 live births die.

The same report said that most maternal and neonatal deaths in the Philippines are due to poor health and nutritional condition of the mother together with inadequate care before, during and after pregnancy.

Results of the nutrition survey done by the Food and Nutrition and Nutrition Research Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (FNRI-DOST) in 2005 showed that 28 in every 100 pregnant in the country are nutritionally at risk.

The proportion of nutritionally-at-risk- pregnant women rose to 28.4% in 2005 from 26.% in 2003.

The same survey also showed that the per capita daily food consumption of Filipino pregnant women was found to be wanting in terms of quality and quantity, while their average diet was also poor as shown by low levels of energy (78.4%) and nutrient intake (lowest for iron at 28.8%).

Other current nutritional problems faced by pregnant women in the country are Vitamin A deficiency, Iron deficiency anemia, iodine deficiency disorders, among others.

In view of this, the Philippines is bent on reducing maternal mortality rate in the Philippines by three fourths in 2010 which is stressed in Millennium Development Goal 5.

The National Objectives for Health 2005-2010 targets to cut down maternal mortality from 172 to 90 deaths per 100,000 live births and reduce perinatal mortality from 24 to 18 deaths per 1,000 live births.

Meanwhile, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo recently inaugurated today the P6-million out-patient department and 50-bed capacity hospital of the Davao del Sur Provincial Hospital which was built, not only to cater to the health needs of the local residents of Davao del Sur, but also to the residents of nearby Davao provinces.

The P6-million OPD facility is an additional building structure of the Davao del Sur Provincial Hospital constructed for the purpose of not only providing comprehensive health care services to the people but also to promote the training of human health resources. (PIA/RMN) [top]

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