Department of Health - updates

Rappler's latest stories on Department of Health


Angara backs imposing price ceiling on 120 medicines

Oct 19, 2019 - 6:45 PM

The Department of Health says the generic medicines in the list are being sold 'up to 4 times' the international reference prices, while branded innovator products are sold 'up to 22 times'

Image from Shutterstock

[PODCAST] Bakit kailangang magpabakuna?

Oct 18, 2019 - 4:22 PM

Bakit nagkaroon ng panibagong polio outbreak sa Pilipinas at paano ito maaayos? Pakinggan ang talakayan nila researcher-writer Jodesz Gavilan at health reporter Janelle Paris.

DOH urges stricter surveillance of vaping-related illnesses

Oct 17, 2019 - 5:00 PM

Health Secretary Francisco Duque III says this would allow 'existing health information systems capture to data on vaping-related disorders'

LACK OF EVIDENCE. The DOH says there is a lack of conclusive evidence to support the safety of e-cigarettes. Image from Shutterstock

40,000 kids in Marikina to get polio vaccine

Oct 16, 2019 - 7:50 PM

Marikina deploys 59 vaccination teams, composed of various units of the city government, to reach the 40,000 target

CATCH-UP VACCINATION. Marikina Mayor Marcy Teodoro administers the oral polio vaccine to a child during the launch of the DOH's catch-up polio vaccination campaign in the city Monday, October 14. Photo courtesy of Marikina City Press Release

DOH begins catch-up polio vaccination in Mindanao, Metro Manila

Oct 14, 2019 - 2:40 PM

Vaccination against polio in Lanao del Sur, Marawi City, Davao City, Davao del Sur, and Metro Manila will run from October 14 to October 27

POLIO VACCINATION. Children have their anti-polio vaccine during a mass polio vaccination at Luzviminda Health Center in Luzon Street, Sampaloc, Manila on October 14, 2019 following the outbreak of the disease declared by Department of Health last month. Photo by Inoue Jaena/Rappler

DOH: No conflict between Local Government Code, Universal Health Care

Oct 11, 2019 - 8:36 AM

Even with the integration of health facilities into provincial and city-wide networks, the country's healthcare system remains devolved

File photo of a rural health unit.

Over 10,000 health workers could lose jobs due to DOH budget cut – Recto

Oct 10, 2019 - 3:00 PM

This concern comes as the Department of Health gears up for the implementation of the Universal Health Care law in 2020

NURSE PAY HIKE. Nurses from Filipino Nurses United (FNU) and nurses from different public and private hospitals ask for 30,000 salary increase, safe nurse to patient ratio, and quality patient care during a press conference at Ermita Manila on 8 October 2019. Photo by Lito Borras/Rappler

Duque wants review of Local Government Code to renationalize healthcare

Oct 09, 2019 - 5:12 PM

'If health is not a priority and there are other priorities like infrastructure, health programs can be compromised,' says Health Secretary Francisco Duque III of the country's current system of devolved healthcare

RENATIONALIZED HEALTHCARE? Health Secretary Francisco Duque III wants a review of the health provision in the Local Government Code of 1991. Photo by Janella Paris/Rappler

DOH: Prevent meningococcemia through good hygiene

Oct 05, 2019 - 5:01 PM

The Department of Health reiterates its appeal to the public after it confirms two cases of meningococcemia in Laguna and Batangas

CLEAN HANDS. Kids in Boracay show off their soapy hands. Photos courtesy of Manila Water Foundation

EXPLAINER: Ano ang polio?

Oct 01, 2019 - 8:44 PM

Ano ang polio at paano maiiwasan ang pagkalat nito? Panoorin ang video explainer ng Rappler.

40 dead due to diphtheria since January 2019, but no outbreak – DOH

Sep 26, 2019 - 3:24 PM

The Department of Health is still studying the reasons for the increase in number of cases

DISEASE PROTECTION. Students use face mask to cover their nose at Jacinto Zamora Elementary School in Pandacan, Manila on September 25, 2019.  Photo by Inoue Jaena/Rappler

Immunization program understaffed, logistically challenged – DOH

Sep 24, 2019 - 6:37 PM

Health officials also stress the importance of face-to-face interaction between health workers and parents, in easing concerns over vaccination

Robredo: Children bear repercussions of making 'health a political issue'

Sep 22, 2019 - 4:50 PM

The Vice President urges the Department of Health to catch up on children's vaccinations following the re-emergence of polio

VP ROBREDO. In this file photo, Vice President Leni Robredo gives a message in an awarding ceremony at the Quezon City Reception House on February 22, 2019. Photo by OVP

With polio back, EcoWaste wants more DOH funds to build toilets

Sep 22, 2019 - 10:58 AM

Only P2 million is allotted under the DOH's proposed 2020 budget to build sanitary toilets

POLIO OUTBREAK. The Department of Health declares a polio outbreak after the first case of the disease was recorded in the country after 26 years.

Ex-DOH spokesperson Lyndon Lee Suy dies

Sep 21, 2019 - 7:02 PM

'Assistant Secretary Lyndon Lee Suy was a dedicated public health servant and committed himself to service and excellence in spite of the challenges of his roles at the Department,' says the Department of Health

PUBLIC SERVANT. Assistant Secretary of Health Lyndon Lee Suy died of cardiac arrest on Saturday, September 21, 2019. Photo from Department of Health website

Recto urges DOH to boost immunization drive, 'triage' its budget

Sep 21, 2019 - 3:55 PM

Senate President Pro-Tempore Ralph Recto says 'at least 4 items' in the DOH’s proposed 2020 budget could be used to increase the national immunization drive turnout

DOH, UNICEF launch animation contest for 'Goodbye, Dumi! Hello, Healthy!' campaign

Sep 20, 2019 - 6:50 PM

PRESS RELEASE: The campaign is composed of various communication tools and strategies focusing on the core messages of always using the toilet and washing hands with soap during critical times

DOH confirms 2nd case of polio in the Philippines

Sep 20, 2019 - 6:23 PM

A day after declaring a polio outbreak in the country, the health department says the disease is found in a 5-year-old boy from Laguna

SECOND CASE OF POLIO. The Department of Health confirmed a second case of polio in Laguna, September 20, 2019.

'Polio vaccine is very safe,' DOH reminds public amid epidemic

Sep 20, 2019 - 1:55 PM

'Please, I beg of you, for the sake of our children...make sure they have proper hygiene and they get vaccinated,' Health Secretary Francisco Duque III appeals to the public as polio cases reemerge in the Philippines after 19 years

VACCINES ARE SAFE. The Department of Health urges parents to get children vaccinated amid the recently-declared polio epidemic.

Hontiveros says DOH's P10-billion budget cut an 'attack on public health'

Sep 19, 2019 - 11:22 PM

Health Secretary Francisco Duque III appeals to senators to grant them additional budget for 2020 to be able to fully roll out the Universal Health Care law

BASIC SERVICES. Only basic services and accommodation are covered by the Universal Health Care Law and yet it still lacks funding for its first year of implementation. Photo by Darren Langit/Rappler

PH declares polio outbreak as disease returns after 19 years

Sep 19, 2019 - 3:53 PM

The Department of Health says a 3-year-old girl from Lanao del Sur tests positive of the poliovirus, the first case of the disease since the country was declared polio-free in October 2000

House panel approves bill for Malasakit Centers in DOH hospitals

Sep 18, 2019 - 12:15 PM

Senator Bong Go, who had been accused of using Malasakit Centers to promote his candidacy, is pushing for the passage of the same bill in the Senate

MALASAKIT CENTER. Senator Bong Go attend the launching of the Malasakit Center at the Tarlac Provincial Hospital in Tarlac City on February 6, 2019 back when he was still running for senator. File photo from Go

Channel drug rehab funds to Tokhang victims' burial assistance – Bong Go

Sep 17, 2019 - 7:36 PM

Burial assistance, be it for a drug war death or otherwise, usually comes from local government units and the Department of Social Welfare and Development

BURIAL ASSISTANCE. Senator Bong Go wants funds for the health department's drug rehabilitation program to go to burial assistance instead.

Dengue death toll climbs to 1,021 in August

Sep 13, 2019 - 2:25 PM

The Philippines also has the highest dengue fatality rate in Southeast Asia at 0.4%

DENG-GET OUT. Department of Health (DOH) Secretary Francisco Duque joined the San Juan local government on August 29, 2019 in campaigning for vigilance in the communities against dengue. Photo by Jire Carreon/Rappler

LOOK: Remote Quezon town gets sea ambulance

Sep 07, 2019 - 7:37 PM

Panukulan town in Quezon province gets Calabarzon's first sea ambulance, which was acquired through the Department of Health’s Health Facilities Enhancement Program

SEA AMBULANCE. The first DOH funded sea ambulance through the Health Facility Enhancement Program donated to the Municipality of Panukulan, Quezon. Photo courtesy of DOH-CALABARZON

WATCH: Senate hearing on Philhealth, DOH corruption allegations

Sep 05, 2019 - 4:42 PM

Philhealth allegedly continues paying WellMed Dialysis Center even after its accreditation was suspended because of its involvement in a scam

EXPLAINER: What is polio?

Sep 01, 2019 - 7:22 PM

The DOH says the Philippines is at high risk for poliovirus transmission. Why so? And how do we prevent the long dormant disease from coming back?

HIGH RISK FOR POLIO. The Department of Health says the Philippines is at high risk for poliovirus transmission and advices parents to get children under 5 vaccinated to prevent the disease.

Lawmakers to DOH: Why only 33 areas for Universal Health Care rollout?

Aug 28, 2019 - 5:24 PM

Health Secretary Francisco Duque III cites 'limitations' such as budgetary constraints as among the reasons

Fewer leptospirosis cases recorded in Calabarzon in 2019

Aug 24, 2019 - 7:39 PM

Despite the marked decrease in cases, the Department of Health reminds the public to keep away from floodwaters to avoid catching the disease

AVOID FLOODWATERS. Motorists and vehicles wade through floods in Manila brought by heavy rain on Friday morning, August 2, 2019. Photo by Lito Borras/Rappler

DOH upholds permanent ban of Dengvaxia

Aug 22, 2019 - 11:55 AM

(UPDATED) The ban makes it illegal to import, sell, or distribute Dengvaxia in the Philippines

DENGVAXIA BANNED. A health worker shows off used vials of Dengvaxia vaccine inside the storage facility of the local government health sector that was given to students during the school-based immunisation in Manila on December 4, 2017. Photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

113 deaths due to leptospirosis since January 2019

Aug 21, 2019 - 1:01 PM

Though the number of cases are much lower than last year, the Department of Health still warns the public of the dangers of the bacterial disease

LEPTOSPIROSIS. Though there are less cases of leptospirosis cases this year compared to 2018, the health department advises the public to be vigilant. Photo by Jire Carreon/Rappler

DOH warning: Philippines at high risk for polio

Aug 17, 2019 - 6:51 PM

The Department of Health sees a high risk for transmission of poliovirus because of low vaccination coverage, poor early surveillance of polio symptoms, and substandard sanitation practices

HIGH RISK FOR POLIO. The Department of Health says the Philippines is at high risk for poliovirus transmission and advices parents to get children under 5 vaccinated to prevent the disease.

Doctors' groups push DOH moves to fight dengue

Aug 16, 2019 - 4:50 PM

Doctors' groups emphasize 'vector control and early consultation' as key steps to combat the ongoing national dengue epidemic

VECTOR CONTROL, EARLY CONSULT. Health secretary Francisco Duque III visits Dengue patients inside the San Lazaro Hospital in Manila on July 16, 2019. Photo by Ben Nabong /Rappler

Duque: No conflict of interest in family business dealings with gov't

Aug 14, 2019 - 1:42 PM

Health Secretary Francisco Duque III tells the Senate blue ribbon committee that his personal interest in two businesses owned by his family 'did not in any way conflict with the interest of the government'

HEALTH CHIEF. Health Secretary Francisco Duque III gives his opening statement at the start of the s=Senate inquiry on alleged anomalies of PhilHealth on August 14, 2019. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

More dengue cases in Metro Manila cities in 2019

Aug 13, 2019 - 8:09 PM

The Department of Health has recorded a total of 10,103 cases and 43 deaths due to dengue in Metro Manila

DENGUE IN METRO MANILA. A mother uses a dropper to give a dose of 'tawa-tawa' herbal juice to her child who is affected by dengue virus at the Amang Rodriguez Hospital in Marikina City on August 8, 2019. Photo by Darren Langit/Rappler

Duterte open to use of Dengvaxia amid dengue epidemic

Aug 08, 2019 - 7:35 PM

President Rodrigo Duterte says he wants to hear what local scientists and doctors have to say about the controversial dengue vaccine

RISK. A health worker shows off used vials of Dengvaxia inside a storage facility in Manila on December 4, 2017. File photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

40 dead due to dengue in Bicol

Aug 08, 2019 - 3:50 PM

Bicol health chief Ernie Vera urges local officials and communities to take heed of the government's anti-dengue strategy, saying its sustained enforcement can stem the number of dengue cases in the country

Photo caption. DENGUE UPDATED. Department of Health-Bicol director Ernie Vera calls for holistic action to stem the spread of dengue. Photo by Rhaydz B. Barcia

PH has most dengue cases in Southeast Asia in 2019

Aug 08, 2019 - 2:20 PM

The Department of Health reports a total of 622 deaths due to dengue and 146,062 cases from January 1 to July 23, 2019

MOST CASES IN SOUTHEAST ASIA. The Philippines recorded the most number of dengue cases in Southeast Asia from January to July 2019. Photo from DOH Calabarzon

Despite risk warnings, Garin insists dengue vaccine can prevent outbreaks

Aug 07, 2019 - 2:59 PM

But the Department of Health says that the vaccine is not meant for epidemic response

BRING BACK DENGVAXIA. Former health chief Janette Garin insists that bringing back the vaccine could help the government prevent future dengue outbreaks. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

DOH declares national dengue epidemic

Aug 06, 2019 - 6:06 PM

The Department of Health reports a total of 146,062 dengue cases from January to July 2019

NATIONAL EPIDEMIC. Health Secretary Francisco Duque, defense secretary Delfin Lorenzana, science secretary Fortunato dela Pena and NDRRMC Executive Director Ricardo Jalad. Photo by Darren Langit/Rappler

27 dead in Cavite as number of dengue cases doubles

Aug 05, 2019 - 9:04 PM

From January 1, 2019 to August 5, 2019, the Provincial Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit records 6,232 dengue cases, compared to 3,127 cases in the same period in 2018

CHECKING ON PATIENTS. Health Secretary Francisco Duque III visits the dengue ward of the General Emilio T. Aguinaldo Memorial Hospital in Trece Martires City on August 5, 2019. Photo from DOH-Calabarzon

DOJ to probe almost-expired medicines in DOH warehouses

Aug 04, 2019 - 3:40 PM

A 2018 Commission on Audit report finds that over P367 million in medicines were about to expire but were still sitting in warehouses of the Department of Health

Image from Shutterstock

Isko Moreno to health workers: If you can't be kind, you can quit

Aug 02, 2019 - 5:17 PM

'Kung hindi na kayo masaya sa trabaho 'nyo dahil kayo'y masungit na kinakaharap yung mga may sakit, pwede naman kayong magpaalam,' Manila Mayor Isko Moreno tells unkind public health workers

Lift ban on Dengvaxia, doctors' group urges DOH

Aug 01, 2019 - 4:55 PM

'The Philippines has the highest incidence and death rate from dengue this part of the world. Yet it is the only country in the world that has banned it,' says Doctors for Truth and Public Welfare

A health worker shows off used vials of Dengvaxia vaccine inside the storage facility of the local government health sector that was given to students during the school-based immunisation in Manila on December 4, 2017. Photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

Gordon committee to probe corruption in DOH, PCSO

Jul 30, 2019 - 7:06 PM

Senator Richard Gordon says his committee will look into 'conflict of interest' allegations against Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, and also President Rodrigo Duterte's shutdown of PCSO gaming operations

INVESTIGATION. Senator Richard Gordon says he will be leading an investigation into the alleged corruption within the Department of Health, after Senator Panfilo Lacson delivered a privilege speech on it. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

Expiring meds, lack of infra derail Duterte's universal health care law

Jul 26, 2019 - 7:20 PM

The health department has the money it needs to implement Duterte's landmark law, but there is poor implementation of programs, from procurement of medicines to building health facilities

HEALTHCARE FOR ALL. The Universal Health Care Law was signed into law in February 2019, a landmark measure that aims to provide free healthcare for all. File photo by Sofia Tomacruz/Rappler

Dengue death toll rises to 491 in July

Jul 20, 2019 - 3:13 PM

From January 1 to July 6, the Department of Health records a total of 115,986 dengue cases nationwide

DENGUE. Nationwide figures for dengue cases in 2019 spikes to 22% higher than last year's numbers. Shutterstock photo

LOOK: Manila, Pasig governments welcome 'Back to Bakuna' immunization program

Jul 16, 2019 - 8:04 PM

Health chief Francisco Duque III assures Manila and Pasig parents that vaccines work

Department of Health Secretary Francisco Duque III administers a measles vaccine to a student during the school-based immunization campaign attended by local official led by city Mayor Vico Sotto and Representative Roman Romulo at the Pasig Elementary School on July 16, 2019. Photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

New law strengthens disease surveillance and reporting

Jul 16, 2019 - 7:19 PM

The law mandates the health department to continuously develop and upgrade the list of nationally notifiable diseases and health events of public concern

DISEASE SURVEILLANCE. A new law strengthens the reporting and surveillance of notifiable diseases like measles and dengue. Photo by Lito Borras/Rappler

DOH declares national dengue alert

Jul 15, 2019 - 1:59 PM

(UPDATED) The Department of Health reports a total of 106,630 dengue cases from January to June 2019

NATIONAL DENGUE ALERT. The total number of dengue cases in the Philippines stands at 106,630 from January to June 2019.