health - updates

Rappler's latest stories on health


[OPINION] Let's talk about aging

Jan 22, 2020 - 3:00 PM

'It's only now that I’m older, with a few more years of life experience under my belt, that I’m beginning to understand that actually, we really ARE all in this together'

MSG isn’t actually bad for you, studies say

Jan 22, 2020 - 3:00 PM

Activists say that calling MSG the culprit behind 'Chinese Restaurant Syndrome' is both misinformed and 'racist'

Duque: Still many blindspots in ‘novel coronavirus’

Jan 22, 2020 - 11:53 AM

Duque says being infected with a coronavirus is not 'an automatic death sentence' as there are coronaviruses that cause the common cold

BLINDSPOTS. The DOH is investigating the case of a 5-year-old child who traveled to the Philippines from Wuhan, China for manifesting fever, throat irritation and cough prior to entering the country. Photo by KD Madrilejos/Rappler

U.S. confirms 1st case of China virus on American soil

Jan 22, 2020 - 5:11 AM

The man, a US resident in his 30s who lives near Seattle, is in good condition, according to federal and state officials

FIRST CASE. People walk by the New York Stock Exchange on January 21, 2020, in New York City. Markets are down slightly in morning trading as investors weigh concerns over a virus outbreak in China and continued trade concerns between the US and China. Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images/AFP

‘Novel coronavirus’ or 2019 nCoV: What we know so far

Jan 21, 2020 - 9:43 PM

The health department is currently investigating a case of non-specific pancoronavirus in a 5-year-old Chinese boy traveling to Cebu City with his mother. What do we know so far about the virus in question?

NOVEL CORONAVIRUS. Medical staff members carry a patient into the Jinyintan hospital, where patients infected by a mysterious SARS-like virus are being treated, in Wuhan in China's central Hubei province on January 18, 2020. Photo by AFP

DOH probes suspected case of novel coronavirus in Cebu City

Jan 21, 2020 - 1:39 PM

(3rd UPDATE) Health Secretary Francisco Duque III says the suspected case involves a 5-year-old Chinese boy who arrived in Cebu City from Wuhan, China

DOH PRESSER. Health Secretary Francisco Duque III (right)with WHO Country Represenattive Dr Rabindra Abetasinghe briefs the media on January 21, 2020. Photo by KD Madrilejos/Rappler

No smoking 4 weeks before operation cuts risks – WHO

Jan 21, 2020 - 8:57 AM

'Smoking just one cigarette decreases the body's ability to deliver necessary nutrients for healing after surgery,' says the study

What does it mean to regret? How do we get over our regrets?

Jan 19, 2020 - 11:00 AM

For instance, why is it so difficult for us to understand that Prince Harry and Meghan, just like majority of couples on the planet, just want to make something out of their own lives?

WATCH: PH rising up from a year of outbreaks

Jan 18, 2020 - 6:10 PM

In 2019, the Department of Health declared outbreaks of measles and polio in the Philippines. How did this happen?

[OPINION] Giving attention to Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

Jan 18, 2020 - 10:30 AM

ADHD is considered as the most commonly diagnosed mental disorder among children. Could your child have it, and what should be done about it?

Thais find second case linked to China mystery virus

Jan 17, 2020 - 3:27 PM

Authorities ramp up airport screenings ahead of an expected surge in arrivals for Chinese New Year. More than 1,300 passengers are expected to arrive in Thailand daily from Wuhan alone. 

VIRUS. Thai villagers wear masks to protect themselves from the bird flu virus in Kanchanaburi province westhern of Thailand, 21 October 2005. (Photo by Pornchai Kittiwongsakul /AFP)

WATCH: San Mig Light Mahaba-habang Usapan: It’s okay to not be okay

Jan 17, 2020 - 3:00 PM

On World Mental Health Day, we talked about the importance of consciously taking care of our mental health

Suicides in Japan hit record low in 2019, down for 10th year in row

Jan 17, 2020 - 1:26 PM

The ministry says it has introduced measures to prevent suicides, including consultation services for younger people via social media

TOGETHER. High school students make a human chain at an alter at ground zero for the Nagasaki atomic bombing, as Nagasaki marks the 74th anniversay of the atomic bombing at the end of World War II, on August 9, 2019. (Photo by Jiji Press/AFP)

DOH confirms 4 more cases of polio in PH

Jan 16, 2020 - 3:46 PM

One of the 4 new cases was found in the National Capital Region, marking the first case of the disease in Metro Manila since an outbreak was announced in September 2019

VACCINES WORK. Residents of Barangay Batasan Hills in Quezon City, along with their children join the Department of Health's catch-up polio vaccination on October 14, 2019, to stop the spread of polio in the country. Photo by Darren Langit/Rappler

How to spot fake N95 face masks, according to DOH

Jan 15, 2020 - 1:55 PM

Real N95 masks are 'marked with ’N95,’ rigid, thick, and molded for the contour of the face,' says Health Undersecretary Eric Domingo

FAKE MASKS. Trade Undersecretary Ruth Castelo inspects medical stores that allegedly sell overpriced N95 masks along Bambang st. in Sta. Cruz, Manila on Tuesday, January 14. Photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

Sex delays menopause – study

Jan 15, 2020 - 9:12 AM

The study says intimate relations at least once a week reduce the chances of entering menopause by 28%

LIST: Medicines, medical supplies under price control in areas affected by Taal eruption

Jan 14, 2020 - 11:11 PM

The Department of Health orders a price freeze on over 200 essential medicines and medical supplies in Batangas, which declared a state of calamity after the eruption of Taal Volcano

DOH Calabarzon deploys medical emergency teams after Taal Volcano eruption

Jan 13, 2020 - 4:30 PM

All health facilities in the region are on full alert, ready to provide medical help for people with traumatic injuries, burns, suffocation, skin diseases, eye injuries, conjunctivitis, and respiratory problems

EMERGENCY. A woman carries her child as they walk along a street covered with ash in Tagaytay following the eruption of Taal volcano. Photo by Lisa Marie David/Rappler

How to stay safe during volcanic ashfall

Jan 12, 2020 - 9:49 PM

(UPDATED) The Department of Health warns of potential health effects as ashfall from Taal Volcano reaches Calabarzon and Metro Manila

HEALTH EFFECTS. Residents in Talisay, Batangas take shelter in themunicipal Hall, Batangaas late Suday, January 12, 2020. Photo by KD Madrilejos/Rappler

Protest-hit Hong Kong sees surge in depression, PTSD – study

Jan 10, 2020 - 2:08 PM

'One in 5 adults now report probable depression or suspected PTSD, which is comparable to those experiencing armed conflicts, large-scale disasters, or terrorist attacks,' the study says

SMOKE. A protester reacts after police fire tear gas to disperse bystanders in a protest in Jordan district in Hong Kong, on early December 25, 2019. (Photo by Philip Fong/AFP)

Global road crashes up, deaths down – data

Jan 09, 2020 - 9:33 PM

In 2017, the latest year for which complete data is available, 54 million people were injured in crashes, leading to 1.2 million deaths, says the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation

China believes new virus behind mystery pneumonia outbreak

Jan 09, 2020 - 10:56 AM

(3rd UPDATE) The World Health Organization confirms the preliminary discovery of a new coronavirus

FIGHTING EPIDEMICS. Workers are seen inside the P4 laboratory in Wuhan, capital of China's Hubei province on February 23, 2017. File photo by Johannes Eisele/AFP

Jobert Sucaldito slammed for joking about suicide

Jan 08, 2020 - 3:14 PM

These 'jokes' are never okay

Biggest fears for 2020

Jan 08, 2020 - 2:00 PM

What are yours?

DOH extends anti-polio vaccination campaign

Jan 06, 2020 - 3:45 PM

The Sabayang Patak Kontra Polio campaign will have additional rounds in Metro Manila and Mindanao until April 2020

Residents of Barangay Batasan Hills in Quezon City, along with their children joint the National simultaneous polio vaccination on October 14, 2019, to stop the spread of polio in the country. Photo by Darren Langit/Rappler

Duque orders check on travelers from China following reports of mystery viral pneumonia

Jan 05, 2020 - 8:50 AM

Chinese authorities have confirmed 44 cases of a mystery viral pneumonia, which sparked fears about a resurgence of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome or SARS

Duterte skips 2 scheduled visits to earthquake victims in Davao del Sur

Jan 03, 2020 - 7:07 PM

(UPDATED) The President is not feeling well

ABSENT. President Rodrigo Duterte skips two scheduled visits earthquake victims in Davao del Sur. Malacañang Photo

Fireworks-related injuries rise to 164 after New Year’s Eve

Jan 01, 2020 - 11:39 AM

(UPDATED) The number is 35% lower than last year's 249 injuries, says Health Secretary Francisco Duque III

FIREWORKS. A worker assembles light sticks to sold in pyrotechnic stores in Bulacan. December 27, 2019. Photo by Jire Carreon/Rappler

Fireworks-related injuries rise to 62 ahead of New Year

Dec 31, 2019 - 3:16 PM

(UPDATED) Nearly half of the cases involve illegal firecrackers

FIRECRACKERS. To avoid accidents and injuries, the government discourages the use of firecrackers during New Year celebrations. File photo by Jire Carreon/Rappler

Fireworks-related injuries rises to 54 since December 21 – DOH

Dec 30, 2019 - 3:12 PM

The number of this year's cases is now 4 cases higher compared to the same period in 2018, even with a reminder from the health department to skip fireworks for the holidays

DOH: Firecracker injuries rise to 46 since December 21

Dec 29, 2019 - 2:19 PM

The Department of Health says many of the injuries were caused by illegal firecrackers

INJURIES. In this file photo from January 1, 2019, a man injured from using firecrackers is rushed to the emergency room of the Jose Reyes Memorial Medical Center in Manila. File photo by Lito Borras/Rappler

DOH: 22 fireworks-related injuries since December 21

Dec 27, 2019 - 6:02 PM

The health department says this is 35% lower compared to cases recorded during the same period in 2018

NEW YEAR INJURIES. In this file photo, victims of firecrackers in January 2019 were treated in the emergency room at Jose Reyes Memorial Medical Center in Manila. Photo by Lito Borras

Here's how you can be nudged to eat healthier, recycle, and make better decisions every day

Dec 27, 2019 - 10:54 AM

Nudging can work via many mechanisms, some conscious and some not. Typically you don’t recognize you’re being nudged.

CHOICES. Were you subtly encouraged to make that menu choice? Supavadee butradee/

[OPINION] Understanding the esophagus

Dec 24, 2019 - 9:07 AM

It used to be that when the word esophagus was mentioned, the reaction would be 'eso-what?' Now, Barrett's esophagus has become a familiar term thanks to media reportage.

[OPINION] Christmas isn't necessarily merry for people with depression and anxiety

Dec 23, 2019 - 9:55 PM

The family unit – more so the Filipino family – is a complicated creature, and whether or not we want to admit it, not all issues can be wrapped in sparkly paper and topped with a festive bow.

Makati achieves highest polio vaccine coverage rate in Metro Manila

Dec 23, 2019 - 3:15 PM

Metro Manila itself achieves more than 100% of the vaccination target, with children receiving the OPV, or 109.99% of the target

CATCH-UP VACCINATION. Children have their anti-polio vaccine during a mass polio vaccination following the outbreak of the disease declared by Department of Health last month. Photo by Inoue Jaena/Rappler

Health services prioritized in San Juan's P2.55-B budget for 2020

Dec 18, 2019 - 5:03 PM

About P510 million going to the health department and San Juan Medical Center

SAN JUAN BUDGET. San Juan City gets a budget of P2.55 billion for 2020. Photo courtesy of San Juan City facebook page

Ways to have a life outside of work

Dec 11, 2019 - 11:43 AM

Here are some activities you can try that won’t take the whole day

I’m fit and healthy. Do I really need to take multivitamins?

Dec 09, 2019 - 1:17 PM

Even if you lead a healthy lifestyle, you might still need to add vitamin supplements to your diet

Some smokers credit e-cigarettes with saving their lives – does that matter?

Dec 07, 2019 - 10:00 AM

A US tobacco researcher and former smoker assesses to what degree fear and hysteria, rather than evidence, might be informing the crucial public health topic

PROS AND CONS. When comparing the dangers of e-cigarettes to cigarettes, some experts believe the health risks of e-cigs are not as serious as those from cigarettes. Image from Andrey_Popov/

DOH reminds public: Skip firecrackers this New Year's eve

Dec 05, 2019 - 4:11 PM

The Department of Health has seen a downward trend in the number of firecracker-related injuries from 2017 to 2018, but says much is to be done to keep the number at zero

SKIP FIRECRACKERS. The Department of Health is calling on the public to skip firecrackers in their celebration of New Year.

How to start running, for those who can’t stand it

Dec 03, 2019 - 12:24 PM

We talk to a coach from Nike+ Run Club to figure out how we can finally get your running careers started

[OPINION] What touring the Philippines taught me about sexual health in the country

Nov 30, 2019 - 1:00 PM

I came across some truly eye-opening stories, including a young girl who became a mother at the age of 9 and bore her second child at the age of 10

QC children's agenda will address mental health, LGBT discrimination

Nov 29, 2019 - 5:47 PM

Other items on the agenda include bullying, teenage pregnancy, and sexual harassment, among others

NEW CHILDREN'S AGENDA. The children of Quezon City identified emerging issues that will be included in the city's governance agenda, such as mental health and LGBT discrimination. Photo by Loreben Tuquero/Rappler

Fears for infants in Samoa as measles deaths mount

Nov 28, 2019 - 5:16 PM

The Samoan government says the number of fatalities had climbed to 39 and the total number of infections was 2,936, up 250 in a 24-hour period

Measles kills more than 5,000 in DR Congo this year – WHO

Nov 28, 2019 - 11:50 AM

The World Health Organization says, the 'outbreak is the largest outbreak worldwide. It is one of the largest that we have seen.' As of November 17, the country had registered 250,270 measles cases, including 5,110 deaths.

OUTBREAK. A child reacts as he receives an injection during the nationwide vaccination campaign against measles, rubella and polio targeting all children under 15 years old in Nkozi town.  Photo by Badru Katumba/AFP

DOH confirms more environmental samples with polio

Nov 27, 2019 - 5:25 PM

(UPDATED) Of the 26 environmental samples that tested positive for the poliovirus, 25 were obtained in Metro Manila, says the Department of Health

Health workers conduct door to door anti-polio mass vaccination at the Baseco Compound in Manila on October 14, 2019 following the outbreak of the disease declared by Department of Health last month. Photo by Inoue Jaena/Rappler

Report shows high injury rate at Amazon warehouses

Nov 26, 2019 - 11:33 PM

The report by Reveal, a project of the Center for Investigative Reporting, shows the rate of serious injuries at Amazon was more than double the national average for the warehousing industry

AMAZON INJURIES. A robot organizes containers at the 855,000-square-foot Amazon fulfillment center in Staten Island, one of the five boroughs of New York City, on February 5, 2019. File photo by Johannes Eisele/AFP

In U.S., plant-based diet easier than ever, even at Thanksgiving

Nov 26, 2019 - 5:32 PM

There is an increasing number of Americans choosing a vegetarian or vegan lifestyle by adopting a 'plant-based' diet

DOH confirms Philippines' 8th case of polio in Basilan

Nov 25, 2019 - 3:40 PM

A 9-year-old girl from Basilan is the latest known case of polio in the country. Out of the 8 cases, 7 are from Mindanao.

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