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In the continuous development of the Rx Box Program of the National Telehealth Center, information dissemination through forums of stakeholders, private and public local government units are being widely implemented. The Rx Box program is an effort of the Department of Science and Technology and the National Teleheath Center to provide better access to life-saving health care delivery to isolated and disadvantaged communities nationwide.

The RxBox allows diagnosis of the patient’s conditions within the health facility. The following are its features: 1) Blood pressure monitor; 2) Pulse Oximeter; 3) Electrocardiogram; 4) Fetal Heart Monitor; 5) Maternal tocometer and 6) Temperature sensor. It is a multi-component program which aims to build the capacities of frontline health workers for the ethical use of health technologies, the RxBox telemedicine device, Community Health Information and Tracking System (CHITS) and telemedicine.

A roll out of 1,000 units of Rx Box will be distributed among regions of the Philippines. There are approximately 18 units to be distributed in Region 5, all of which are GIDA (Geographically Isolated and Disadvantage Areas). The list of which are still for finalization.


Last August 18, 2016, staff from BCHRD attended the Stakeholder’s Forum and Technology Demonstration on the Rx Box Roll-out Project in Bicol at AVP function hall, Tahao Road, Legazpi City. The said forum was organized by the Department of Science and Technology V in cooperation with UP-National Telehealth Center. The said forum was attended by stakeholders from local government units, Provincial Science and Technology Centers, media , DOH personnel and hospital heads. Highlights on the use of the Rx Box and its implementation were discussed by the RxBox Project Manager, Dr. Kristine Mae Magtubo of UP-National Telehealth Center. The use of the units were also demonstrated by the technicians of the NTC.

During the Opening program of the 10th Philippine National Health Research System (PNHRS) Week Celebration last August 10, 2016 at the Citystate Asturias Hotel, Puerto Princesa City, Palawan,the BCHRD- Research and Ethics Committee was awarded with Level-2 Accreditation by the Philippine Health Research Ethics Board (PHREB). The said award is another milestone for the BCHRD. Awarding of the certificate was given by Dr. Jaime C. Montoya, Executive Director of PCHRD, Dr. Leonardo De Castro, Chairperson of Philippine national Health Research Ethics Board and Dr. Maria Salome N. Vios, Chairperson of PHREB Sub-committee on Standards and Accreditation. Present during the awarding ceremony are some BCHRD-ERC Members, consortium members, BCHRD staff and BCHRD Director, Prof. Michael Montealegre.


Indeed, another job well done and a step closer to BCHRD’s goal of producing ethically- sensitive and quality health and health-related researches to address the needs of the Bicolanos.

Dr. Sandy Lasa receiving the Certificate of Accreditation from Dr. Maria Salome Vios, Dr. Leonardo De Castro and Dr. Jaime Montoya.

The BCHRD’s entry for the Oral Paper Presentation (Student category) wins third (3rd) place during the 10Th Philippine National Health Research System (PNHRS) Week Celebration last August 9, 2016 at the Citystate Asturias Hotel, Puerto Princesa City, Palawan. His paper entitled, “ Screening for Intestinal Anti-inflammatory Activity of Alpinia galanga (Zingerberaceae) Against Acetic-Acid Induced Colitis in Mice (Mus musculus)” was presented together with four (4) other participants screened by the technical committee of the PNHRS.


Each regional consortium were requested to submit two (2) entries for student category oral paper presentation and among the submitted entries, only five (5) entries were shortlisted to present during the contest proper. Baldo won a certificate of recognition and cash prize of Five Thousand Pesos (Php 5,000.00).

Mr. Diomerl Edward Baldo with Dr. Pilita O. Lucena of DOST V.

In the celebration of the Regional Science and Technology week celebration of the DOST ROV last July 25-27, 2016 at the La Piazza Hotel and Convention Center, the Bicol Consortium for Health Research and Development in cooperation with the DOST V, spearheaded a Forum on Health and Food Safety last July 26, 2016, 1:00 -5:00 in the afternoon at the Sicily/ Milan Hall. The said forum was participated by 40 participants mainly composed of researchers and representatives from public and private agencies, SUC’s, HEI’s and members of the consortium.

The objective of the said forum is to increase awareness of the health and health-related researchers on topics on food safety standards and increasing chances of these researchers to write more fundable proposals for funding agencies.

The lady of ceremony, Ms. Rina Llenaresas started the forum with an invocation followed by the Philippine National Anthem. To welcome the guests and participant, Prof. Michael Montealegre , BCHRD Director delivered his welcome remarks. Speakers of the said forum were Prof. Ida Francia H. Revale, director of Bicol University- Regional Center for Food Safety and Quality Standards (BU-RCFSQA) who discussed food safety standards and Dr. Lilibeth A. Cajuday, faculty-researcher of Bicol University College of Science and has one (1) completed research funded by PCHRD and one (1) newly-approved research.

Prof. Revale started the discussion with the recall on the definition of terms related to food safety and food safety standards. She further explained the do’s and don’t’s for preparing, storing and consumption of food. Dr. Cajuday, explained the cycle of proposal from the preparation, writing, submission, review, revision, endorsement until its approval. She cited as an example her completed research with BCHRD which built her patience and confidence in writing researches. She encouraged the participants to write and submit health and health-related proposals to BCHRD for possible funding.

After the discussions of the two (2) speakers, Dr. Pilita Lucena, Senior Science Research Specialist from DOST V acted as moderator for the open forum. Questions from the audience were directed to the two (2) speakers. Inquiries and clarifications from the participants were answered by the speakers.



BCHRD Forum on Health and Food Safety participants, speakers and BCHRD Staff

To formally close the program, Dr. Ma.Teresa G. De Alban gave her insightful and encouraging words of wisdom to the participants. 

A faculty from Bicol University College of Science (BUCS), Michael V. Montealegre has been designated as the new Director of the Bicol Consortium for Health Research and Development (BCHRD) by President and Chairperson Dr. Arnulfo M. Mascariñas.

Montealegre is a licensed chemist and currently teaches chemistry subjects in BUCS. He finished a degree in Bachelor of Science in Agricultural Chemistry at the University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB) in 2001 and completed his master’s degree in chemistry at University of the Philippines Diliman (UP Diliman) in 2015.

He served as chairman of Department of Chemistry, BUCS from 2007 to 2008.. He was also designated as the Special Technical Assistant at BU-CHED Zonal Research Center from 2009 to 2011 and was appointed as the Assistant Director of Bicol University Research and Development Center (BURDC) from 2013 to 2015.

The new director has also been engaged in research for the past years and he won as 2008 CHED Best Regional HEI Research Program Award for the research entitled “Sorsogon Bay Resource Management and Development Program”

Montealegre would be the second consortium director of BCHRD after the term of Dr. Alma S. Banua. (KBC/BCHRD)





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