Dagupan, Philippines – The University of the Philippines Manila National Telehealth Center (UPM NThC) held its 10th Health Informatics Seminar at the Lyceum-Northwestern University (LnU) on February 16, 2011. The whole day event was formally opened by Dr. Magdalena Jasmin, Director for Academic Affairs of LnU. The seminar provided an overview on e-Health and its contribution in improving the quality of health care services. e-Health refers to all forms of electronic health care delivered using appropriate use of information and communications technology.
“We are so thankful to our speakers from UP Manila, (and) we do appreciate now the uses of technology in health,” heralded by LnU College of Nursing Dean Judith Manuel, who led the group of nurse-academicians in welcoming the UPM-NThC team in this city.
The first half of the whole day affair highlighted the basic concepts and theoretical foundations of eHealth. These include, “Introduction to eHealth, Telehealth and Health Informatics” which was discussed by the former director of the UPM NThC, Dr. Alvin B. Marcelo; “Telehealth Nursing and Nursing Informatics in the Philippines” delivered by the Central Operations Telehealth Nurse, Melissa Javier Pedrena; “The Impact of Free and Open Source Software in Health” by Telehealth Developer and Senior Telehealth Engineer; Randy Joseph G. Fernandez and “Ethical Considerations in the Practice of Health Informatics” by the Coordinator for Telehealth Services, Dr. Pura Angela A. Wee. An overview of UPM NThC ONeHealth programs and projects were also highlighted by Telehealth Nurse and Coordinator for Capacity Building on eHealth, Arturo M. Ongkeko Jr. ONeHealth is an integration of three components (i.e eRecords, eLearning, eMedicine) to achive the center’s objective in improving the health information and services delivery.
The afternoon session of the seminar showcased specific eHealth applications that are currently being utilized and developed in the country. These include “Application of Health Informatics in Community Health Nursing: by Telehealth Nurse and Coordinator for Primary Health Care Informatics, Noel A. Banez; “OpenMRS: a Free and Open Source Medical Record System” by OpenMRS implementer and trainer Dr. Jonathan D. Galingan; “Visualizing Health Data” by Public Health Informatics and GIS (Geographical Information Systems) for Health consultant Wayne Dell L. Manuel; “eLearning for Health” by eHealth Nurse and Research Assistant, Isidor F. Cardenas and “iPath: Facebook in Telemedicine” by Project Manager of TB Diagnostic Committee (TBDC) Dr. Paul Nimrod B. Firaza. The participants were able to get their hands around the eHealth applications through demonstrations and return demonstrations. The event culminated with the presentation of “Careers and Future Directions of Health Informatics” by the Coordinator for Research and Development, Dr. Ryan Julius A. Banez.
The LnU CN faculty through the leadership of Dean Judith Manuel organized the forum where some 650 nursing students, faculty staff members, and university administrators attended.
The Lyceum-Northwestern University is the biggest university in Dagupan, Pangasinan with about 1,000 enrolled students annually.
This is the first time UPM NThC offered this seminar outside of Manila. Dr Portia Grace Fernandez – Marcelo, the newly appointed director of the center, thanked the LnU for this collaborative work, looking forward to future partnerships in raising awareness of health professionals and students on the enabling role of ICT in health. The UPM NThC plans to bring the forum to Visayas and Mindanao.