note: Welcome to the Global Health page. The purpose of this feature is
to raise awareness of global health issues with an academic spirit to
help improve the quality of care provided to patients. E-mail
by Vanessa Mercee Vargas
College of Graduate Studies
Republic of the Philippines is an archipelago in Southeast Asia
comprising 7,107 islands categorized broadly into the Luzon, Visayas,
and Mindanao regions, with Manila as the capital city. Development and
industry is uneven, centering mostly on urban areas particularly Metro
Manila in Luzon.
About 80 percent of the population is Roman Catholic. However, Filipinos also are Protestants, Muslims and Buddhists.
The Philippines is the
world’s 12th most populous country and has an estimated population of
about 92 million people with an additional 11 million Filipinos
overseas worldwide. Sustainable population growth is one of the biggest
problems affecting their health system, education and other services.
Predominantly Catholic, the country only supports “natural” birth
control. Artificial birth control is frowned upon or even seems foreign
to rural areas where people are mostly farmers and fishermen.
Recently, heated debate over a reproductive health bill to provide
government-funded family planning, contraceptives, and sex education
has the country divided. The fact that this bill is being debated and
has reached Congress is a sign that cultural change is taking place and
people are becoming more open and progressive.
glaring differences between urban and rural areas are not only
reflected on life style, education and industries, but on health care
as well. The major hospitals are usually located in the greater Manila
area and are mostly private. Cost of health care may seem cheap to
foreigners, but to the majority of the population, it is not as
affordable. In some of the deep rural areas, because of the scarcity of
clinics and hospitals, some people consult albularyos or “quack”
doctors that make use of traditional medicine that most of the time
associates diseases with supernatural forces.
The migration of health care practitioners, especially nurses and
doctors, is a growing national concern. The country is training health
care professionals beyond the country’s capacity to provide
opportunities for practice. Because of the promise of better
opportunities, people would try their luck in the cities, resulting in
overpopulation and crowding.
Despite the poverty and ignorance that is widespread in the country,
Filipinos are still generally happy, content, and joyful in the simple
things and comfort in the warmth of family and friends. Filipinos are
known for their familial ties and extend it to others; thus the famous
Because of the Philippines colorful history, Filipino culture is a
combination of Eastern and Western cultures influenced by Spanish,
American, Chinese and other Asian nations. The Philippines is rich in
natural resources, with its beautiful beaches, stunning landscapes and
rich terrestrial and marine biodiversity. With its rare scenic views,
rich culture and friendly people, the Philippines is truly the Pearl of
Facts about Philippines
- Regarded as the “text
capital of the world.” About 350 to 400 million SMS (short message
service) or text messages are sent daily by 35 million cell phone
subscribers in the country, which is more than the total daily text
messages sent in the U.S. and Europe, together
- It stretches from the south of China to the northern tip of Borneo
- Third largest-English speaking country in the world. The national language is filipino (based on Tagalog)
- Philippines is the 12th most populous country in the world
25-year-old male was swimming at a beach in the Philippines when he
suddenly experienced excruciating pain in his leg. He subsequently lost
consciousness, turned blue, and became very stiff. He was pulled to
shore by friends where CPR was initiated. The most likely marine hazard
responsible for this man’s symptoms is:
A) Sea snake
D) Box jellyfish
correct answer is D, box jellyfish, a mid-sized species that appears
seasonally in tropical Indo-Pacific and along the north coast of
Australia. These jellyfish are known for their extremely powerful
venom which can be fatal (mortality 15 to 20 percent). Death may result
from hypotension, cardiac arrest, and respiratory paralysis. Treatment
of marine envenoming in general requires identification of the species
and immediate removal of retained spines or nematocysts. Removal of
most jellyfish nematocysts and tentacles can be facilitated by the
application of vinegar. Antivenin is available for box jellyfish
stings and must be administered rapidly.
Students will be collecting for Water Missions International from noon
to 1 p.m. Monday through Friday in the University Hospital.
International Tax Seminar
There will be an international tax question and answer seminar from
5:30 to 7 p.m., Feb. 11 in the Harper Student Center Auditorium. Light
dinner will be served.
Friday, Jan. 29, 2010