Report by: Gidoemaly Romero

The Provincial Health Office trained Barangay Service Point Officers (BSPO) and Barangay Health Officers along with the midwives from the different municipalities on the Development of Barangay Coordinators on Family Planning Program to improve local health system in the province.
During the four-day training (Nov. 15, 16, 17 and 20) at Rakdell Inn in Virac, the trainees were equipped with the necessary skills as Barangay Program Coordinators.

The Family Planning Program is the 7th of the ten programs identified by PHO where the province is deemed to have low performance.

The local health workers were reminded of the objective of the training, which is to contribute to the attainment of the National Objectives for Health (NOH) and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set by the United Nations through enhancing the local health system and efficient use of resources.
Dr. Hazel Palmes emphasized that many women still need Family Planning (FP) services.

She said that in accordance to the National Demographic Survey, 6M Filipino women have zero unmet need of which 2M belong to the poor sector of society.
“Kapag mahirap ang isang babae na nangangailangan ng services chances are problema hindi siya makaka-access pero hindi lang nila alam na andyan po kamo na nagtatao nin services,” Dr. Palmes underscored.

“We have to sustain acceleration for the family planning program,” Dr. Palmes stressed adding that family planning will basically end maternal mortality, teenage pregnancy and risking the lives of children under 5 years of age.
She highlighted that Family Planning is a means to end poverty due to increasing population and now they are given the opportunity to change the situation of every Filipino family.

Likewise, through the training they are going to have harmonized or unified system of report that will enable the local health workers determine those who have unmet needs and provide the necessary services for their clients.

Meanwhile, Dr. Delia Soriao pointed out that Family Planning Coordinators must provide FP Counseling and Services within the Principles of Informed Choice and Voluntarism (ICV).

She referred to ICV as effective access to information on reproductive choices and counselling services to help clients choose and use appropriate FP methods, as well as healthcare facilities and supplies without coercion on their choice of FP method.

The local health workers were challenged to contribute to the attainment of zero unmet need given that the LGU is part of the mechanism in implementing the Executive Order No. 12 of attaining and sustaining zero unmet need for modern family planning.