April 2010

Cancer in Children Awareness Month 7 World Health Day 12-16 Garantisadong Pambata – Round 1 22 Philippine Earth's Day 25 World Malaria Day 4th wk Head and Neck Consciousness Week

Cancer in Children Awareness Month

As cancer is among the causes of death in children, especially with the emergence of new cases, the Department of Health has declared the month of April as Cancer in Children Awareness Month. Among the most common forms of cancer in children are leukemia, brain and spinal cancer, lymphomas, retinoblastoma or eye cancer, wilm’s tumor or cancer of the kidney and the estrogenic sarcoma, which is a type of bone cancer. Although cancer detection is difficult among children as they are associated with common childhood disease, the Department of Health advice parents to have their children undergo regular medical check-up especially when they experience prolonged and unexplained fever, pallor or paleness, pain, increased tendency to bruise, unusual masses or swelling, frequent headaches, sudden visual changes and weight loss. Reports have it that sedentary lifestyles and unhealthy diets are some of the causes that people are more prone to cancer. There are observations that smoke inhaled from cigarettes is one cause for lung cancer which is so common here in our country. According to medical practitioners, having a healthy lifestyle, regular exercise, proper diet and regularly bringing our children for check-up will help in maintaining their good health. Along this line, parents are advised to feed their children with fiber rich foods and to avoid giving them junk food like processed canned goods, which are rich in fats and have less dietary contents. It was learned from health experts that fiber rich foods are important not only because it reduces blood cholesterol, but more importantly because it prevents risk in development cancer in the child and other diseases. Relative to this, parents are advised to feed their children a variation of food intakes, which contain vitamins and minerals and is important in the development stage of the child.

The objective of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month is to spotlight childhood cancer and survivorship issues related to childhood cancer nationally. This is dedicated to leading the way in advocacy and fundraising for childhood cancer research and awareness.

World Health Day
World Health Day is celebrated every year on 7 April, under the sponsorship of the World Health Organization (WHO). In 1948, the World Health Organization held the First World Health Assembly. The Assembly decided to celebrate 7 April of each year, with effect from 1950, as the World Health Day. The World Health Day is celebrated to create “awareness of a specific health theme to highlight a priority area of concern for the World Health Organization (WHO)”. Activities – related to that particular theme and the resources provided – continue beyond 7 April, that is, the designated day for celebrating the World Health Day.

Themes of Present and Previous World Health Days World Health Day 2010: 1000 cities - 1000 lives

World Health Day 2010 will focus on urbanization and health. The theme was selected in recognition of the effect urbanization has on our collective health globally and for us all individually. Some facts on urbanization Over 3 billion people live in cities. In 2007, the world’s population living in cities surpassed 50% for the first time in history. By 2030, six out of every 10 people will be city dwellers, rising to seven out of every 10 people by 2050. World Health Day campaign: 1000 Cities, 1000 Lives With the campaign 1000 cities, 1000 lives, events will be organized worldwide during the week of 7 – 11 April 2010.

The global goals of the campaign are: 1000 cities: to open up public spaces to health, whether it be activities in parks, town hall meetings, clean-up campaigns, or closing off portions of streets to motorized vehicles. 1000 lives: collect 1000 stories of urban health champions who have taken action and had a significant impact on health to in their lives.

World Health Day 2009: Save lives. Make hospitals safe in Emergencies

World Health Day 2009 focuses on the safety of health facilities and the readiness of health workers who treat people affected by emergencies. Health centres and staff provide vital health care in communities every day. In disasters, their services are in even greater demand: treating injuries, preventing illnesses and caring for people’s urgent health needs. A safe hospital that continues to function at optimum capacity during and after a disaster or other emergency is a safe haven that protects lives. Safe health facilities are a joint responsibility, requiring crucial support from other sectors to ensure essential life-lines. When health facilities stop functioning, it is a double blow to a devastated community.

World Health Day 2008: Protecting health from the adverse effects of climate change

The World Health Day, on 7 April, marks the founding of the World Health Organization and is an opportunity to draw worldwide attention to a subject of major importance to global health each year. In 2008, World Health Day focuses on the need to protect health from the adverse effects of climate change.& establish links between climate change and health and other development areas such as environment, food, energy, and transport. The theme “protecting health from climate change” puts health at the centre of the global dialogue about climate change. WHO selected this theme in recognition that climate change is posing ever growing threats to global public health security. Through increased collaboration, the global community will be better prepared to cope with climate-related health challenges worldwide. Examples of such collaborative actions are: strengthening surveillance and control of infectious diseases, ensuring safer use of diminishing water supplies, and coordinating health action in emergencies.

World Health day 2007: International health security

The theme for World Health Day 2007 was international health security. The aim was to urge governments, organizations and businesses to "invest in health, build a safer future". Emerging diseases, such as SARS and avian influenza, humanitarian emergencies, health risks from effects of climate change or environmental

degradation, and other acute health threats can all be defined as public health emergencies. International health security is the first line of defence against health shocks that can devastate people, societies and economies worldwide. A high-level global debate took place in Singapore on 2 April 2007, in advance of the Day, to raise the profile of international health security. The wide-ranging debate challenged panellists to confront the public health, business and diplomatic obstacles to improved cross-border cooperation, and urged them to find a way forward to more effective collaboration. Key messages for World Health Day 2007: 1. Threats to health know no borders. 2. Invest in health, build a safer future. 3. Health leads to security; insecurity leads to poor health. 4. Preparedness and quick response improve international health security. 5. The World Health Organization is making the world more secure

World Health day 2006: Working together for health

In 2006, World Health Day was devoted to the health workforce crisis. Health workers - the people who provide health care to those who need it are at the heart of health systems. But around the world, there is a chronic shortage of health workers as a result of decades of underinvestment in their education, training, salaries, working environment and management. The results are evident: clinics with no health workers and hospitals that cannot recruit or keep key staff. This is a crisis from which no country is entirely immune. Hundreds of organizations hosted events to draw attention to the global health workforce crisis and to celebrate the dignity and value of working for health.

World Health day 2005: Make every mother and child count

The theme of World Health Day 2005 was healthy mothers and children. The well-being of societies is directly linked to the health and survival of mothers and children. Yet too many mothers and children are dying or suffering from the effects of ill-health, poor nutrition and inadequate health care. Nearly all these deaths occur in low- and middle-income countries, and mainly among the poorest of the poor. Events were organized worldwide to raise awareness of this needless suffering, and of the efforts needed by all to ensure life and good health among these precious members of society.

World Health day 2004: Road safety

In 2004, for the first time in the WHO history, World Health Day was focused on the theme of road safety. Although road traffic collisions kill more than 1.2 million people a year around the world, they are largely neglected as a health issue, perhaps because they are still viewed by many as events which are beyond our control. Yet the risks are known: speeding, alcohol, non-use of helmets, seat belts and other restraints, poor road design, poor enforcement of road safety regulations, unsafe vehicle design, and poor emergency health services.

World Health Day 2004 tried to advocate a "systems approach" to road safety, which takes into consideration the key aspects of the system: the road user, the vehicle and the infrastructure.

World Health day 2003: Healthy environments for children

World Health Day 2003 was a call to do more to protect three of our greatest assets: health, the environment and our children. Every year, more than 5 million children under the age of 15 die from diseases and conditions caused by the environments in which they live, learn and play. Many of these deaths could be prevented through the creation of healthy environments in the home, the school and the community at large. From India to Ireland and from Chile to China, hundreds of communities, teachers, local governments, civil society groups, medical professionals and children participated in events to support solutions to minimize environmental risks.

World Health Day 2002: Move for health

World Health Day 2002 stimulated a global debate on the shift in the global burden of disease and the factors that are fuelling this process of change. In most parts of the world, noncommunicable diseases have become a major epidemic. This is due, in part, to a rapid change in lifestyles leading

to reduced physical activity, changing diets and increased tobacco use. This trend is present in all societies, rich and poor, developed and developing. To draw the attention of policy-makers, the public health community and civil society to these issues, World Health Day 2002 emphasized the importance of fitness and a healthy lifestyle.

World Health Day 2001: Mental health: stop exclusion - Dare to care
World Health Day 2001 was dedicated to influencing public opinion and stimulating debate on how to improve the current condition of mental health patients around the world. Nobody is immune to mental disorders, and their impact in psychological, social and economic terms is very high. Advocacy activities focused on the key concerns of care and exclusion as demonstrated by depressive disorders, schizophrenia, Alzheimer's disease, alcohol dependence, epilepsy and mental retardation. Countries and organizations adapted activities to focus on the problems and disorders which have a significant impact in their communities.

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2000: Safe Blood Start with Me 1999: Active Aging Makes the Difference 1998: Safe Motherhood 1997: Emerging Infectious Diseases 1996: Healthy Cities for Better Life 1995: Global Polio Eradication
Reference: http://www.who.int

Garantisadong Pambata (GP)

Garantisadong Pambata (GP) is a campaign to support various health programs to reduce childhood illnesses and deaths by promoting positive child care behaviours. GP is a program of the department of Health in partnership with the Local Government Units and other government and nongovernment organizations. This ensures that all children below five years old receive health services needed by them to be healthy. Children who missed the routine health services and those living in the remote areas are given special attention during GP Week. The services of Garantisadong Pambata are as follow: 1. Giving Vitamin A capsule (VAC) supplement to all 12-59 months old children. 2. Catch-up immunization (children who missed the routine immunization like BCG, DPT, OPV, Measles) 3. Distribution of iron supplements to infants and pregnant women. 4. Promotion of positive caregiving behaviors: a. Exclusive breastfeeding of infants from 0 to 6 months old. b. Feeding infant micronutrient rich complementary foods starting 6 months old. c. Using iodized salt daily. d. Buying and eating fortified foods. e. Brushing of teeth properly and regularly. f. Letting children playing safe toys. g. No smoking in-front of pre-schoolers. GP is done twice a year. One week in April and one week in October. The second round of GP for year 2001 is in October 15-19. GP improves child survival and safe motherhood. And also improves skills, capacity to learn for better educational and school performance.
Reference: http://www2.doh.gov.ph/GP/gplinggo.pdf


Philippines extend the observance of Earth Day events to an entire week, usually starting on April 16 and ending on Earth Day, April 22.These events are designed to encourage environmentally-aware behaviors, such as recycling, using energy efficiently, and reducing or reusing disposable items. Earth Day is a day to promote awareness and appreciation for the Earth's environment. It is on 22 April. It was founded by U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson(D-Wisconsin) as an environmental teach-in in 1970 and is celebrated in many countries every year. The first Earth Day was in 1970. Earth Day is spring in the Northern Hemisphere and autumn in the Southern Hemisphere. The United Nations celebrates Earth Day each year on the March equinox, which is often 20 March. This is a tradition which was founded by peace activist John McConnell in 1969. The United Nations first celebrated Earth Day on the March equinox in 1971. This was also the first time ever that the United Nations celebrated Earth Day. The Earth Day on the March equinox was also in 1970. Earth Day is similar to World Environment Day. Clean Up the Philippines campaign is one of this program which is under the banner of Clean Up the World. Supported by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), Clean Up the World is a global environmental initiative which involves more than 35 million volunteers in over 120 countries each year, making it one of the most largest communitybased environmental campaigns in the world.

World Malaria Day

25 April is a day of unified commemoration of the global effort to provide effective control of malaria around the world. This year's World Malaria Day marks a critical moment in time. The international malaria community has less than a year to meet the 2010 targets of delivering effective and affordable protection and treatment to all people at risk of malaria, as called for by the UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-Moon. World Malaria Day represents a chance for all of us to make a difference. Whether you are a government, a company, a charity or an individual, you can roll back malaria and help generate broad gains in multiple areas of health and human development. Reducing the impact of malaria would significantly propel efforts to achieve the Millennium Development Goals, agreed by every United Nations member state. These include not only the goal of combatting the disease itself, but also goals related to women's and children's rights and health, access to education and the reduction of extreme poverty. Hundreds of RBM partners - governments, international organizations, companies, academic and research institutions, foundations, NGOs and individuals - are already gaining ground against malaria. Diverse partner initiatives are guided by a single strategy, outlined in the Global Malaria Action Plan.

Malacaṅang declared the fourth week of April and every year thereafter as HEAD AND NECK CONSCIOUSNESS WEEK by Proclamation NO. 1676. This headed by the Philippine Society of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery and the Department of Health which aims to increase awareness of the cancer of the head and neck region and to promote prompt diagnosis, correct management and early prevention. Head and Neck Cancer which includes nasopharynx, oral cavity and larynx and thyroid diseases ranks as the third most common cancer sites here in the Philippines where as there is an increase in the number of cases of head and neck cancer as we are exposed more to environmental toxins, chemicals, pollution, smoking and alcohol, and improper nutrition. According to the 2005 Philippine Cancer Facts and Estimates by the Philippine Cancer Society and Department of Health, there are 12,150 new cases, ranking head and neck cancer as number 3 next to lung and breast. Head and Neck Cancer will have an enormous impact on the person, family, community and country as a whole as it translates to loss of income and loss of productivity on the part of the patient and the immediate family. The social aspect as well is affected as depression and anxiety comes into the picture. There will be an intensive information dissemination campaign regarding the prevention, early diagnosis and prompt treatment of Head and Neck Cancer should be proactively implemented and dynamically pursued to contain the disease and prevent further social and economic effect. The Department of Health and the Philippine Society of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery are directed to take the lead in planning and organizing activities for the Head and Neck Consciousness Week. All other government and non-government organizations, private and local government units, academic institutions and civil society groups are enjoined to take an active role and participate in the celebration and conduct activities.

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