Monday, February 20, 2012

"ICE" entries in mobile phones help paramedics ID victims' next of kin 
By Rey Anthony H. Chiu 

TAGBILARAN CITY, Bohol February 18 (PIA) --- Putting “In Case of Emergency” (ICE) entries on your mobile phones helps emergency rescuers and paramedics identify serious victims of accidents. 

In a casual talk with provincial administrator Alfonso Damalerio, he said emergency rescue unit (ERU) paramedics in Bohol have actual difficulty in identifying victims of serious accidents and informing nearest of kin about the situation. 

The Bohol’s Telephone and Radio Systems Integrated Emergency Responders 117 (TARSIER 117) or town- based ERUs agreed with Damalerio that calling next of kin of unconscious or unable to talk accident victims are hard. 

“This is an added service by ERUs, but picking out who among the victim’s mobile phones prove to be hard after all,” Damalerio added. 

An independent phone company research showed that fewer than 25% of people carry details of the people they want to call following serious accidents. 

In a specific motor vehicle accident (MVA) which Damalerio and the TARSIER responded to, he admitted it was hard to notify next of kin about the accident at that time. 

The MVA victim was unconscious and responders could not get the victim’s identification, except a working mobile phone. 

“The next question is who among the contacts will be notified? Who do we call in case of emergency?” Paramedics asked. 

A Panglao-based foreigner that works as team leader in the country’s emergency rescue and response unit shared that “in cases like this, we have to be extra careful.” 

“You just can not call or text anyone among his cell-phone contacts, for propriety sake,” the rescue expert warns. 

You wouldn’t know if the entry listed as “Mom” on the phone is properly disposed to receive the shocking information; she might have heart complications that receiving the news might trigger another emergency situation, he added. 

TARSIER 117 sources said in Bohol cases it is generally a hit or miss as the intention is actually as noble as notifying the family about the incident. 

How to solve the situation, TARSIER 117 suggested to begin educating people on putting ‘quick contact entries’ on cell-phones such as “In Case of Emergency” or ICE. 

According to Wikipedia, In Case of Emergency (ICE) is a program that enables responders such as firefighters, paramedics, police officers and well as medical personnel to contact the next of kin. 

According to a veteran rescuer, it is not just for quick medical emergencies, sometimes as responders you need significant information as to items the victim has allergies to or current medical condition as some emergency responses may be counter to the victims current medical treatments. 

In mid 2000, a British paramedic started encouraging people to enter emergency contacts in their mobile phone address books under the heading ICE. 

It means when paramedics pick your phone by scrolling to ICE, they know at least that the victim has confidence in the person to be notified. 

He said using alternate ICE contacts like ICE1 (Dad), ICE2 (Mom) and so on, can be done, he said. 

Asked on cases where some cell-phone owners lock their units, he said some phones can be unlocked and working, or in extreme cases, inserting the victim’s Subscriber Information Module (SIM) pack to another phone may work, he said. 

On the idea, Board Member Abeleon Damalerio said ICE makes sense and people should consider using it on their cell phones. 

Responders also said a piece of paper with emergency numbers carried by the persons always works out fine, that way, “we do not have to worry about browsing through other people’s personal communications equipments.” (mbcn/rahc/PIA-Bohol) 

"How do you solve a problem like malnutrition?" 
By Rey Anthony H. Chiu 

TRINIDAD, Bohol, February 18 (PIA) -- In Trinidad, Bohol the local government and the municipal nutrition council (MNC) is looking at a revolutionary way to stamp malnutrition in the town. 

“Going to the roots,” says Trinidad information officer Jojeline Ruiz-Buendia. 

“Malnutrition in this town is not as prevalent as other towns. It’s high time to look at the malnutrition concern seriously,” Trinidad mayor Roberto “Ondoy” Cajes said in an interview. 

Cajes who chairs the MNC is also the president of the league of mayors in Bohol. 

From his efforts at creating an integrated e-business center in the town hall, the mayor launched recently “Basura mong prutas at gulay, kalusugan at buhay ko (Fruits and vegetables’ wastes, my health and life)." 

Launched on February 8 at the Trinidad Public Market the project ties up with the Trinidad Public Market Vegetable Vendors and the LGU through its MNC members. 

Cajes explained that the project is with the fruit and spice vendors’ association of Trinidad. This is a non-costly project that lessens the burden of the LGU in collecting wastes and quickly disposing of them. 

“Now, we have seen that from the garbage we still can produce seeds which can be grown into seedlings to be distributed to target households specifically those with malnourished children and those who are considered marginalized,” Buendia said. 

Buendia added this way too we can encourage families to grow vegetables and fruits in their backyards and thus cut off the costs of buying food for the family. 

“As a premium they get these fresh from their backyards,” mayor Cajes said. 

By planting fruits and vegetables, poor families not only help themselves but also help in greening the environment and buffer the effects of climate change their own little way, the mayor added. 

Vendors will donate their rotten seeds of spoiled vegetables and spices to the MNC so that the seeds are extracted and processed and eventually grown to seedlings. 

These then shall be distributed for free to families with malnourished children. 

In line with this, the project also provides vendors with receptacles for their rotten vegetables and fruits and shall be collected regularly for extraction and processing by the Municipal Agriculture Office thru its designated collectors, said Buendia. 

Monitoring, recording and reporting of project outputs are done on a quarterly basis through a mechanism where the Municipal Nutrition Coordinator, Felisa Loreto also reports during the quarterly MNC meeting. 

This initiative jibes with this year’s nutrition month theme, “Pagkain ng gulay ugaliin, araw araw itong ihain.” (mbcn/rahc/PIA-Bohol) 

LPP seeks moratorium on Philhealth increase 
By Rey Anthony H. Chiu 

TAGBILARAN CITY, Bohol, February 18 (PIA) -- The League of Provinces of the Philippines (LPP) has formally asked for a moratorium on Philippine Health Insurance Corporation’s (Philhealth) plans to increase contributions by 2012. 

Bohol Governor Edgar Chatto said, the LPP passed a resolution asking the Philhealth Board not to implement the new Philhealth contribution schedule as yet, amid recent developments in the government’s medical insurance program. 

It may be recalled that Philhealth, in its Board Resolution 1571, series of 2011, approved the increased in contributions to enhance its benefits package. 

Enhanced benefits means increased premium contribution. The last package rate was pegged in 1995. 

According to Philhealth sources, what used to be a partly subsidized program paid mostly by the national government and some local government counterparts, indigents identified under the NHTS are paid in full through LGU-Sponsored Program. 

The national government’s Philhealth contribution for all identified poor families of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) under the Sponsored Program is now P2,400 annually effective 01 January 2012 from P1,200 per year. 

This development also delists those who have been enrolled but are found to have better economic conditions than those most needing the service. 

For local governments that wants to continue their people’s medical insurance service PhilHealth opens up a Partial Subsidy Scheme, but total LGU contribution with the agreed amount share of the beneficiary is P2,400 from P1,200 annually which is effective July 1, 2012. 

Philhealth said that those who enroll following the calendar year and pays their contribution within the First Semester of CY 2012 the annual premium contribution shall be computed at an annual premium of P1,200. 

Even with a possible sharing scheme between Local Government Units and beneficiaries handling the Philhealth contributions of their not so needy constituents could be all too heavy for some local governments, Chatto hinted during the radio program 'Kita ug Ang Gobernador' Friday. 

This has pushed the LPP to come up with a resolutions asking Philhealth to consider the moratorium proposal.  

As this developed, Chatto has met with all local dads including district barangay captains to update them of the development. (mbcn/rahc/PIA-Bohol)

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