THE Department of Health (DOH) Ilocos Region will provide a P11 million fund for the province of Ilocos Sur, one of the expansion sites for the Universal Health Care-City/Province-Wide Healthy Setting (UHC-C/PWHS), to finance the effective, efficient and equitable implementation of the Healthy Settings Program which focuses on effecting Healthy Learning Institutions (HLI) in the province.
“This fund will be utilized in the implementation of HLI programs such as capacity building, action planning, monitoring and evaluation and other activities necessary to support the roll-out including immunization, mental health and comprehensive sexuality education/adolescent reproductive health,” Regional Director Pula Paz M. Sydiongco stated during the HLI capacity building activity conducted last April 20-22, 2023 in San Juan, La Union.
The activity was attended by members of the Department of Education (DepEd) Regional Office I and local government units (LGUs) of Ilocos Sur province.
“Ang Ilocos Sur ang may pinakamaraming public schools na nasa GIDAs (Geographically Isolated and Disadvantaged Areas) at malalayong barangay na tinatawag na ‘last mile elementary school’ (LMES) at mayroon tayong 206 na identified sa buong probinsya.. Eto yung mga may less than four classrooms, walang kuryente, walang pondo for repair at no construction projects for the last four years,” said Sydiongco.
“We will be assisting in the establishment of health promotion programs in these LMES and will provide an avenue for population-based health interventions, age-appropriate health education, and implementation of health-promoting policies to improve the development of health literacy and behavior among Filipino learners,” Sydiongco emphasized.
Healthy Learning Institutions (HLI) are schools that promote the health and well-being of their learners and personnel in line with the six (6) pillars of the DOH’s Health Promotion Framework Strategies (HPFS) Initiative for mobilizing school health promotion and education activities, namely healthy public policy, physical school environment, social school environment, links with the community, health skills and education, and access to health care.
“We have a responsibility to ensure that school environments are the best they can be and the health and well-being of learners are prioritized and well taken care of. And we can achieve this by establishing health-promoting schools, which are a means of organizing and linking all the crucial components which shape their health,” she added.
The fund will be given to the provincial government of Ilocos Sur, which will lead in the implementation of HLI programs in 30 identified LMES together with the DepEd Schools Division Office and LGUs.