UP Visayas hosted the Visayas Focus Group Discussion of the Pandemic Response Playbook Project, which is being put together by the UP Manila Health Policy Development Hub (HPDH) Team of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
The FGD was held on October 5, 2022, at the Little Theater, wherein the draft of the Pandemic Response Playbook was presented by Dr. Hilton Y. Lam, Director of the UPM Health Policy Hub and the National Institutes of Health of UP Manila.
The first part of the FGD started with a discussion titled, “Constant, vigilant monitoring of events nationally and internationally with Big Data Analytics.” It was presented by Ms. Ara Abigail Ambita of the Division of Physical Sciences and Mathematics-CAS. It emphasizes the usefulness of big data analytics and artificial intelligence in monitoring and responding efficaciously to pandemic episodes in the Philippines.
The following were also presented during the FGD:
- Epidemiologic Rating by Hon. Ninfa S. Garin, San Joaquin Mayor
- Rapid Containment at our borders by Hon. Roquito Tacsagon, Tubungan Mayor
- Risk Communication to the community by Hon. Jerry P. Treñas, Iloilo City Mayor
- Mass vaccination, boosters by Hon. Sofronio L. Fusin, Jr., Oton Mayor
The FGD ended with a critique of the “Post Implementation Evaluation” content of the Playbook by Prof. Pepito R. Fernandez, Chair of the Division of Professional Education, UP Visayas. Fernandez said that the Playbook that was crafted can serve as a stand-alone investigation to assess the success or performance of a site-specific pandemic response mechanism. It can also help with internal reflection and learning of the various agencies and organizations deployed. He envisions that the existence of the Pandemic Response Playbook will improve institutional coordination among frontline agencies and volunteer groups, and calm markets to further encourage business continuity. It can also provide an institutional map and platform for civic education and volunteerism.
The Pandemic Response Playbook is being crafted to develop a pandemic response playbook that will guide government policies and non-government stakeholders’ contributions in case such a national crisis occurs again in the future.
The team is also scheduled to conduct an FGD for Mindanao to come up with a national scenario for the Playbook. The Visayas leg was in partnership with UP Visayas. Chancellor Clement Camposano visited the event and met the UP Manila research team as well as representatives of the NEDA central office, the funding agency of the research project. (Ms. Mary Lyncen Fernandez, IPO)