Visit thumbAfter six months of practicing what they were taught in the classroom, nine mayors trooped to the office of Philippine Vice President Jejomar Binay to present the significant health improvements in their respective municipalities.
The nine mayors, along with their municipal health officers (MHOs), belong to the first batch of local health leaders who enrolled last September in the Certificate Course in Public Health Governance, a joint program of the University of Makati and the Zuellig Family Foundation.
When the course was launched last June, the Vice President was present to show his support for the program’s objective which is to help mayors and MHOs develop their leadership capacities in order to achieve the health Millennium Development Goals in their areas.
A long time mayor prior to becoming the second-in-command of the Philippines, Binay commended the mayors for initiating reforms such as re-activating their local health boards, institutionalizing health policies and implementing innovative programs that have all led to better health indicators.
Binay said that “all maternal and child mortality should be preventable” and shared that when he was mayor of Makati City, he partnered with barangay (village) captains to improve pregnancy tracking and referral systems in the city.
During the visit, the mayors were also able to discuss with the Vice President other health issues that still need to be resolved in their municipalities such as lack of health facilities and equipment.
Mayors and MHOs who complete the two-module, 18-month certificate course can also earn academic units from the University of Makati. The training curriculum consists of eight days of classroom interaction divided into two modules, with six months of on-site practicum interspersed with classroom sessions.
The nine mayors are from the municipalities of Cervantes in Ilocos Sur, Ragay in Camarines Sur, Looc and San Andres in Romblon, Ivisan in Capiz, Calbiga and Motiong in Samar, Llorente in Eastern Samar and St. Bernard in Southern Leyte.
Currently, the University and ZFF are preparing for a new batch of ten municipality mayors and MHOs who will take the course this year.