Philippine Nurses Association of America Foundation, Inc

Keynote Speech

Congressman Jerry P. Treñas

Ladies and gentlemen, honored guests, a pleasant day to you all. I would like to extend my sincere appreciation to the organizers for inviting me to be the Keynote Speaker to this first collaborative international conference themed “Promoting Health Care Quality through Leadership and Global Linkages: Translating Research into Practice”.

I congratulate the Philippine Nurses Association of America Foundation (PINAAF), headed by its president Araceli D. Antonio, all of the officers and trustees of the Foundation, the Philippine Nurses Association Iloilo Chapter, and the Professional Regulations Commission Iloilo Employees Multipurpose Cooperative for convening this laudable conference.

This conference is very timely as the current administration’s health policy is geared towards achieving universal health care for all Filipinos. Our lead national agency, the Department of Health (DOH), is mandated to ensure that the poorest families are reached by priority health programs.

In Congress, we have pending bills and resolutions focused on health and medical practice-related concerns. I already filed House Resolution 822 which urged both the DOH and the Department of Labor and Employment to order hospitals to cease from charging fees from medical trainees who serve in our various medical institutions who wish to gain experience. We at the House of Representatives are truly concerned about the welfare of our nurses and the advancement of our health services.

We also understand the need for Evidence-Based Clinical Practice Guidelines (EBCPG). Countries like the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia have already adopted clinical practice guidelines. Developed guidelines are extremely vital for both health practitioners and patients.

In the Philippines, several initiatives related to healthcare are now pending in Congress. Yet there is still no initiative yet on the development of Evidence-Based Clinical Practice Guidelines. However, we are aware of the significance of this issue and we shall work with your organization to craft these guidelines.

We also recognize that we need to have an in-depth understanding of certain barriers hampering efficient healthcare such as inadequate access to information, unavailability of required tools and equipment, professional inaction, skills deficit of healthcare workers, and challenges of organizational hierarchies.

The role of the government in advancing the interests of your organization, therefore, is very crucial. It is the policy of the state to protect and promote the right to health of the people and instill health consciousness among its citizens, as well as to adopt an integrated and comprehensive approach to health development. To government is also mandated to undertake appropriate health manpower development and research that are responsive to the country’s health needs and problems.

Given the government’s mandate, we greatly acknowledge the need to push for development and dissemination of Evidence-Based Clinical Practice Guidelines in the Philippines. Marking today’s international collaborative conference as a kick-off point, the product of this initiative may help us identify opportunities and make recommendations that will lead us to gain momentum nationally. This might even trigger the review of existing laws and resolutions, as well as the mandate of our health agencies. Legislators can also lobby for the appropriation of funds for the integration of evidence-based practice initiatives such as health promotion, disease prevention, and wellness initiatives.

The objective of this conference is very significant. There is great need for coordinated strategies requiring appropriate skill, determination, time, money and planning from all of the participants.

I commend the organizers of the conference for tackling the issue and bringing it to the forefront of health-related advocacies. I congratulate the participants for making yourselves available in this pursuit of the advancement of skills and knowledge with the participation of well-known speakers and guests who are experts in their respective fields. It is our desire to support the various initiatives and activities of your organization.

Together, we can improve both the quality and outcomes of health care, through the development and implementation of Evidence-Based Clinical Practice Guidelines. Thank you and enjoy the conference and Iloilo City.