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       The Gelia Castillo Award for Social Innovation in Health (GCASIH) aims to recognize the outstanding models of social innovations that address persistent, societal and health systems challenges. The award also acknowledges the innovators at the frontlines. Through the innovators’ experience we can better understand how and why social innovations are impactful, the factors enabling their success and the lessons that can be gleaned from their experience to scale it more broadly in the larger health system.

       The award is open to all ongoing social innovation programs or projects developed by Filipinos for the Filipinos. The entry must be implemented mainly in the Philippines.

       For the purposes of this Award, Social innovations in Health (SIH) is defined as a novel solution (process, product, practice, market mechanism) created and implemented by a range of stakeholders, in response to a priority health need within a geographical context. This may come from a formal or informal research process that has enabled innovation has enabled health care that is more inclusive, affordable and effective.

Who can nominate?

  • Any institution - public or private
  • Members of the consortium
  • Scientific, technological and professional societies or associations
  • Research institutes
  • Universities and colleges


*Self-nomination is not allowed.


  1. Eligibility. The research or innovation program or project will be considered for shortlisting based on the following eligibility criteria. The entry or entries:
  2. Must be developed by Filipino/s.
  3. Must be implemented for at least one (1) year.
  4. Based on an identified priority health need of a community or geographical context.
  5. Complete application form (that has sufficient information for a fair review) submitted within the set deadline.
  6. Selection. The shortlisted, eligible entries will be reviewed by an external selection panel based on the following selection criteria


 General/ Generic Criteria  
  1.  Degree of Innovativeness
 The innovation provides a novel approach to address a systemic health challenge within the context. It provides an alternative to the status quo  25 %

      2. Inclusiveness

 The solution has the potential to be used by a large number of people, enhancing equity and access  15%

      3. Affordability

 The solution is affordable to the poor who are otherwise excluded in the local context or the solution is more cost-effective than the status quo  15%
      4. Effectiveness  The solution has a demonstrated positive outcome on the health challenge it is addressing  15%


Country- specific Criteria           
1. Based on Health Need  The solution addresses a health priority of the Philippines (as defined by the National and/ or Regional Unified Health Research Agenda), or a priority in a more localized level such as prevalent yet neglected health problem in a town or a marginalized group/ ethnic group  10%
2. Participatory & Co-Owned  Participatory approach is evident in the development, implementation, and evaluation of the innovation (i.e. contributions from various stakeholders: the patients/ families, local health personnel, local leaders, other sectors)  10%
3. Has Potential for Integration/ Scale Feasibility for the solution to be applied, replicated and scaled up to other communities with similar problems. 10%












GCASIH Secretariat

Nomination Procedures

  1. How to nominate
    • Nominations should be made using the prescribed nomination form. All entries must be submitted to and endorsed by an institutional RHRDC Member.
    • RHRDC Secretariat will evaluate the submissions based on eligibility criteria
    • All interested parties may submit in person, through a courier or through an electronic mail. All entries must be submitted to the Regional Health Research and Development Consortia (RHRDC). A list of contact persons and addresses per RHRDC will be provided. A web-based nomination platform will also be designed to those who wish to submit online. The platform can help facilitate receiving, storing and processing of nominations
    • Aside from the fully accomplished nomination form, all interested parties are requested to submit relevant documentary proofs (e.g. publications, technical reports, certifications, photographs)
  2. Schedules and Deadlines

            Nominations are accepted and reviewed on a rolling basis. Entries received after the deadline may be considered in the next cycle. However, strongest consideration will go to those entries submitted on or before the prescribed deadline.

Procedure for Selection

There will be two (2) levels of selection:

  1. The Preliminary Screening or Shortlisting
  2. Final Selection


  1. Preliminary screening/Shortlisting
  2. The RHRDC will be responsible for the initial review and shortlisting of all entries based on the eligibility criteria. The applicants whose nominations have been excluded should be emailed directly to be informed that their nomination did not meet the eligibility criteria.
  3. The RHRDC will then recommend the shortlisted entries to an independent panel of experts to be appointed/convened by the DOST-PCHRD and the DOH for evaluation and final selection.

Final Selection

  1. A panel of experts will be convened based on the number of shortlisted entries received.
  2. Allocation of entries to expert panel will be in two distinct ways:

First: targeted allocation where the entry will be matched to a reviewer that have some or is an expert in the focus area of the innovation being presented

Second: random allocation

This dual approach will help ensure that the selection process is relevant and fair. If there is a conflict of interest in the allocation, the entry should be reassigned.

  1. Once the review panel has been organized, they can begin the process of scoring nominations. Each nomination will be evaluated by two reviewers and will be scored on a scale of 1 – 5 in 0.5 increments. An online scoring platform is proposed to be developed to make the evaluation more unified and transparent.
  2. Once all scores have been received from the selection panel members, the two scores for each nomination should be averaged. The full list of nominations must then be ranked by these average scores.
  3. Once the final selection has been concluded and before the public announcement is made, each applicant should be directly contacted with the outcome of the decision (i.e. was or was not selected).
  4. If no innovation sufficiently meets the qualifications, the expert panel has the prerogative not to give the award.
  5. The decision of the expert panel of reviewers is final.
Outstanding 4.5/ 5.0
Excellent 4.0
Very Good 3.0 /3.5
Ordinary 2.5
Needs more thought 1.5 /2.0
Flawed 1.0


Option A:

The Award consists of a cash prize of Php 100,000 each and a trophy for the top 3 socially innovative projects.

Alternatively, we can award:

Php 200,000 for the top socially innovative project and Php 50,000 each as consolation incentives for top 2 and 3 projects/innovations respectively.


One winner each in Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao with cash incentive of Php 100,000 each.


Option B (in the future/subsequent calls):

Innovation acceleration fund (between Php 300,000 – Php 500,000) + capacity building package/workshop with partner institution (e.g. SIHI Philippines Hub and/or Asian Institute of Management) to further expand and scale the innovative project.



LEGAZPI CITY-The DOST through the Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (PCHRD) initiated a program called Tuklas Lunas as an effort to discover safe and effective natural alternatives to allopathic medicine in partnership with the academe, and the industry to screen marine, microbial and plant species for pharmacologic activities. To expand the coverage of the Tuklas Lunas researches across the country taking into account the Philippines' rich biodiversity, the PCHRD plans to establish more Tuklas Lunas Development Centers (TLDCs), with Region V as one of the target sites. 

With this, the DOST-PCHRD Tuklas-Lunas Program Team headed by  Dr. Amelia P. Guevarra, Chair of the Technical Advisory Group, Ms. Melissa Bulao, Tuklas Lunas Program Coordinator and Mr. Aldrick B. Verano, project management officer conducted institutional visits to Department of Science and Technology V (DOST V), University of Santo Tomas- Legazpi (UST-Legazpi) and  Bicol University (BU) last October 8-9, 2018 to discuss possible collaboration, repackaging and expansion of the scope of the proposal as the program following the project proposal submitted by Dr. Lilibeth A. Cajuday, a professor of Biology department of the Bicol University. 

The said meeting was attended by the president of Bicol University and BCHRD Chairperson, Dr, Arnulfo M. Mascarinas, Dr. Jocelyn Serrano, dean of BU-College of Science, Dr. Lilibeth A. Cajuday, project leader of the study submitted, Prof. Michael Montealegre, BCHRD director, Dr. Rafaelita Lucena, DOST V representative, BUCS faculty and staff as well as DOST V and BCHRD staff. 

During the said meeting, the objectives and the process of drug research under the Tuklas Lunas Program were discussed by Ms. Melissa Bulao followed by the presentation of the project proposed by Dr. Lilibeth Cajuday and the presentation of the Manpower and Facilities of the Bicol University relevant to the program. Comments of the Tuklas Lunas advisory team were given after. The visit was ended with a tour of the natural science laboratory of the Bicol University.

In observance of the Generics Awareness Month for September, the Department of Health (DOH) Bicol urged the public to refrain from overusing or misusing antibiotics by taking in antibiotic medicines without the doctor’s prescription or discontinuing use before the specified date. This is to prevent the spread of Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) wherein the microorganisms exposed to antimicrobial drugs such as antibiotics develop a resistance from medicines.
DOH warns that misusing antibiotics would render medicines ineffective and let infections persist in the body, which can increase the risk of spread to others. AMR also threatens the effective prevention and treatment of an ever-increasing range of infections caused by bacteria, parasites, viruses and fungi.
DOH 5 Regional Director Napoleon Arevalo cited that “without effective antimicrobials for prevention and treatment of infections, medical procedures such as organ transplantation, cancer chemotherapy, diabetes management and major surgery would be compromised.”
He also added that the cost of health care for patients with resistant infections is higher than care for patients with non-resistant infections due to longer duration of illness, additional tests and use of more expensive drugs.
To strengthen the thrust of preventing AMRs, DOH conducts Philippine Antibiotic Awareness Week every November. Meanwhile in Bicol, DOH Pharmacist III, Maribel Cruz, also started to integrate lectures on AMR on most programs of the DOH Bicol to further spread the advocacy.
“The best we could do is be strict with prescriptions, and conduct more information caravans so we can convince people to change their behavior when it comes to taking antibiotics,” said Cruz.
In 2016, 490 000 people developed multi-drug resistant TB (MDRTB) globally, extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis (XDR-TB), a form of tuberculosis that is resistant to at least 4 of the core anti-TB drugs, has been identified in 105 countries, as data from World Health Organization (WHO).
Meanwhile, records from 2017 registered a total of 368 people in Bicol region afflicted with MDRTB and mostly affects people from ages 25 to 54, especially males.
WHO revealed that drug resistance is starting to complicate the fight against HIV and malaria, as well.
DOH advises the public to always consult with a doctor before taking in antibiotics, follow and finish the correct regimen when taking the medicine, and desist from giving excess antibiotics to others. Additionally, it is recommended to cover the mouth when coughing or sneezing to prevent bacteria from spreading.

Seeing the rise of cases of measles in the region, the Department of Health (DOH) Bicol intensified its prevention campaign and urged the public to avail vaccines. According to DOH, unvaccinated children and pregnant women are among the population with increased risk of acquiring measles.
The DOH Bicol has recorded 197 cases from January to September this year, which is a 194% spike from the 67 cases from 2017. Masbate holds the highest record among the other provinces with 69 cases as of date, followed by Camarines Sur – 60, Camarines Norte – 41, Albay – 12, Sorsogon – 12, and Catanduanes - 3. The DOH attributes the rise of cases to the public’s resistance to vaccination.
“The increasing trend of cases of measles in Bicol is alarming and that is why we are strengthening our information caravan to increase the level of awareness of the general public regarding tigdas (measles), as well emphasize the importance of getting vaccinated as part of the prevention method,” said Regional Director of DOH Bicol, Dr. Napoleon Arevalo. He also advised the public to seek and avail vaccines from Supplemental Immunization Activities of DOH.
“Currently, there is no specific antiviral treatment for measles so the best that we can do here is make sure we prevent it, the MMR (Measles, Mumps, and Rubella) vaccine is 93% effective at preventing measles and we included it in our Basta Wednesday Bakuna Day program,” he added.
Complications from measles can be serious and even fatal resulting in blindness, severe diarrhea, respiratory infections such as pneumonia, encephalitis or the acute inflammation of the brain, and even death.
DOH Bicol assured that it would continue its information and education campaign on the prevention of measles in the region. Part of the strategy that DOH employs is the routine measles vaccination for children through school health caravan, and fixed house-to-house immunization.
DOH Bicol Family Health Cluster Head, Dr. Rita Mae Ang-Bon reminded that vaccines are safe and further encouraged stakeholders to help their immunization program.
“We want to inform everyone that vaccines are safe and it is the primary prevention for measles. We also have ongoing campaigns in schools and communities and we would need everyone’s support in order to make Bicol tigdas-free,” said Ang-Bon.

Nakikiisa ang Philippine Council for Health Research and Development sa selebrasyon ng Buwan ng Wika na may temang “Filipino: Wika ng Saliksik.” Bilang pangunahing ahensya ng Kagawaran ng Agham at Teknolohiya na nangangasiwa sa pananaliksik sa larangan ng kalusugan, hinihikayat ng Konseho ang pagpapalawig ng paggamit at pangtangkilik ng wikang pambansa sa pananaliksik, hindi lamang tuwing buwan ng wika, kung hindi pati na rin sa pang araw-araw na kagamitan.


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