BICUTAN, TAGUIG CITY – The National Academy of Science and Technology, Philippines (NAST PHL) will launch the publication entitled “PAGHAHANDA PILIPINAS: Strategic Initiatives on Pandemic Preparedness and Response” as part of the opening day of the 2022 National Science and Technology Week (NSTW) on 23 November 2022 at the World Trade Center, Pasay City.
Recognizing its significant mandate as an adviser to the President and the Cabinet on matters related to science and technology, NAST PHL has chosen to focus on providing scientific and evidence-based advice on the COVID-19 pandemic response, as well as recommendations in preparation for future health emergencies. With this, the 43rd Annual Scientific Meeting (ASM) and 2021 Regional Scientific Meetings (RSMs) of NAST PHL were virtually organized with the theme “COVID-19 Pandemic: Learning from the Past, Coping with the Present, Moving to the Next”.
PAGHAHANDA PILIPINAS serves as the synthesis of the transdisciplinary discussions during the 2021 RSMs and 43rd ASM. The publication and the 43rd ASM Resolutions were developed from the invaluable insights and recommendations of the2021 RSMs and 43rd ASM.. The two documents are envisioned to serve as complementary references in promoting pandemic preparedness, addressing different sectoral and multidisciplinary issues brought by the pandemic, and influencing legislators, decision-makers, and planners at all levels of government and concerned sectors of society.
Six (6) sectoral concerns with transdisciplinary implications are covered in the publication. These include (1) food, environment, and health, (2) viral evolution and modeling interventions, (3) digital ecosystems and standards to address pandemics and other hazards, (4) education and human resource development, (5) balancing the economy and health, and (6) health systems response and preparedness.
“It is our hope that PAGHAHANDA PILIPINAS will stimulate further discussion on existing problems that may remain beyond the COVID-19 pandemic and contribute to the enactment of necessary reforms that will give the country a fighting edge against the next pandemic. All of these initiatives should be continuously enhanced and sustained to ensure our country’s capacity to respond to future health crises,” said Academician Jaime C. Montoya, chair of the 43rd ASM Steering Committee and the NAST Health Sciences Division.
Some of the key initiatives supported by NAST PHL through PAGHAHANDA PILIPINAS include the establishment of the Virology and Vaccine Institute of the Philippines, the creation of a Philippine Centers for Disease Prevention and Control, the development of resilient local food systems, curriculum and workforce development for the strengthening of the country’s biosurveillance system and modeling interventions, the development of digitalized support systems and technologies for education, continuity of work, urban planning, and public safety, and institutionalization of social protection systems.
In the past two years, the NSTW was held virtually. This year, the annual S&T celebration which showcases the innovations, inventions, and other S&T-related research made by Filipino scientists marks its face-to-face return from 23 to 27 November at the World Trade Center. Spearheaded by the DOST, the NSTW will be held with the theme “Agham at Teknolohiya: Kabilikat sa maunlad, matatag na Kinabukasan”.
The launch of PAGHAHANDA PILIPINAS, which will be held during the 2022 NSTW Awards and DOST Intellectual Property Awards Awarding Ceremony, will be broadcasted on the NAST PHL (https://www.facebook.com/nastphl) and NSTW Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/nstwdost). After its launch, the digital copy of the book can be downloaded at the NAST PHL website (https://nast.ph/index.php/paghahanda-pilipinas). (Ryan John Pascual/NAST PHL)