Delivering Health Information and Services to Filipino Women in Remote Areas

Over a hundred underprivileged pregnant women in the Philippines received timely prenatal care and information on safe pregnancy and delivery, healthy pregnancy spacing, child health, and nutrition thanks to USAID's Health Promotion and Communication Project (HealthPRO) and the Philippine Provincial Health Office. The project and office recently organized an integrated health event in Mount Diwata, a small, remote village in the Compostela Valley Province of Mindanao. 

HealthPRO is USAID's lead vehicle for providing technical assistance in health promotion and communication to the Philippine Department of Health, local government units, and other collaborating institutions.  URC manages HealthPRO in close partnership with local counterparts. The partners hope to accelerate the country's progress toward achieving the Millennium Development Goals by creating positive norms; establishing supportive environments; repositioning health care services; and promoting healthy behaviors among individuals, families, and communities.

Inadequate prenatal care, poor knowledge of pregnancy's danger signs, and failure to respond quickly and appropriately to emergencies contribute to maternal and newborn deaths in the Philippines and many other countries. These factors often affect the most vulnerable populations, in this case poor women living in remote areas.

The event, "Integrating Health Promotion and Service Delivery," was the first of its kind in the province and resulted in local government commitment to support more integrated health activities in the future: it has incorporated a series of safe motherhood events for remote areas in its 2012 Annual Operations Plan.

Left: A health promoter engages 130 pregnant women in a game to deliver a safe motherhood message. Right: Pregnant women take iron with folate following a ceremonial custom.
Left: A health promoter engages 130 pregnant women in a game to deliver a safe motherhood message. Right: Pregnant women take iron with folate following a ceremonial custom.
Date 
February 24, 2012
Authors 
Niambi Wilder, Communications Coordinator
Regions/ Countries