National Oral Health Month


Pursuant to the Presidential Proclamation No. 559, celebrating the month of February as the National Oral Health Month. This celebration is to strengthen the public awareness on the importance of the good oral health.

National Nutrition Council-Caraga strongly advocates the importance of 1st 1000days of life as we also celebrate the 2021 National Oral health month theme: “Ngipin ay Alagaan Mula sa sinapupunan para sa magandang ngiti hanggang katandaan”.  Oral health is an integral to general health and essential to well‐being and quality of life. It is a window to our overall health. Oral health affects nutrition status and diet intake. Similarly, nutrition also plays key role in oral and dental health.

According to Department of Health there are two most common oral health disease affecting the Filipinos wherein 87.4% Filipinos suffer from dental caries while 48.3% of Filipinos has gum disease.

Exclusive breastfeeding during 0-6 months has very important role in preventing gum disease to occur during early childhood days. A well-balanced complementary food, minimizing the introduction of sugary foods during 6 months and above can also help prevent the two common dental diseases from occurring. Early introduction of sugary foods contributes to the prevalence of oral health diseases specifically dental caries in children and it can adversely affect the overall nutrition for growth specifically on their weight and height.

The Department of Health provides oral health services for infants, pre-school and school-age children, adolescents, adults, senior citizens and pregnant women. This year’s theme also encourages everyone to see your dentist every six months. You may visit your dentist at your rural health centers to avail oral health services.


DOH STH pictureLast January 1-31, 2021, Caraga Region observed the National Deworming Month. Soil-transmitted helminth (STH) infections are among the most common infections in humans worldwide, caused by a group of parasites commonly referred to as worms, including roundworms (Ascaris lumbricoides), whipworm (Trichuris trichiura) and hookworms (Necator americanus and Ancylostoma duodenale) which can impair nutrient intake and malabsorption and these parasites may possibly compete for vitamin A and other nutrients. These worms also feed on host tissues and blood that can cause internal bleeding and anemia due to iron and protein loss. Soil-transmitted helminth infections also causes diarrhea and dysentery, intestinal inflammation and obstruction. All of these could lead to dehydration, malnutrition, general malaise, weakness, impaired growth and physical development and if not treated, death.

STH are transmitted by eggs that are passed in the feces of infected person; In areas that lack sanitation, these eggs contaminate the soil. Eggs are ingested when vegetables are not carefully washed, cooked and prepared. Eggs can also be ingested from contaminated water source and if people are not washing their hands after in contact with contaminated soil. People can also become infected with hookworm primarily by contact of contaminated soil, hookworm eggs hatch in the soil, releasing larvae that mature into a form that can actively penetrate the skin.

The periodic large-scale administration of anthelminthic medicines to populations at risk, can prevent and reduce cases of STH infections. Philippines observes the National Deworming Month twice a year, every January and July to eliminate intestinal parasitism among children as one of the goals of Department of Health (DOH). A synchronized schedule of mass drug administration for STH is done in schools and the community by the DOH and Department of Education in partnership with the different health offices of the local government units. However, long-term sustainable solutions to STH are the most needed interventions to address many factors, including improvement of sanitation, hygiene, safe and clean water source.


White and Pastel Plain Collage Facebook PostThe National Nutrition Council Caraga, spearheaded by OIC RNPC Retsebeth Laquihon, in collaboration with the NNC Nutrition Information & Education Division represented by the National Focal Person for Nutriskwela NO II Katherine Villanueva-Bucton, conducted a Refresher & Orientation on the Management of Nutriskwela Community Radio Network Program on January 26, 2021 via Zoom Video Conferencing.

The refresher/orientation aims to orient the new radio staff and to review the guidelines on the management of the Nutriskwela Community Radio Stations in Caraga Region.

All 3 Nutriskwela Community Radio Stations in Caraga Region attended the activity, namely: (1) Radyo Kaagapay in Sibagat, Agusan del Sur represented by Station Manager Elizabeth Badajos; (2) Radyo Kabakhawan in Del Carmen, Surigao del Norte represented by Station Manager Elwin Argana and Program Manager Aljon Judilla; (3) Radyo Kinaiyahan in Malimono, Surigao del Norte represented by Radio Technician Michael Albia.

The radio personnel were refreshed/oriented on the Operation, Management & Maintenance of Nutriskwela Station in the New Normal Setting, the Nutriskwela Community Radio Station Editorial & Station Policy, Equipment Maintenance and Troubleshooting, the Strengthening of the Nutriskwela Community Radio Council, and on the strategies on the New Media and Social Networking Site. NNC Caraga and its network of Nutriskwela Community Radio Stations, amidst the present challenges, aims to strengthen the use of radio broadcast and social networking to ensure updated sharing of information on nutrition and on the COVID-19 updates.

NNC Caraga sincerely thank the local chief executives and partner SUCs for the continued support on the operation and maintenance of the Nutriskwela Community Radio Stations.

Author: NO I Raphael P. Ochavo, RN


Agusan del Norte Provincial Nutrition Committee Chaired by Governor Dale Corvera led the turnover ceremony of the nutrition commodities to its component city and municipalities on February 4, 2021 at  Provincial Capitol, Butuan City.February 4, 2021, Butuan City - the Provincial Nutrition Committee Chaired by Governor Dale Corvera led the turnover ceremony of the measurement tools funded and procured by the provincial government of Agusan del Norte and IEC materials from the NNC to respective LGUs in the province. NNC Caraga OIC-RNPC Retsebeth M. Laquihon also graced the ceremony. She presented the nutrition situation of Agusan del Norte and emphasized the need to invest for nutrition in the First 1000 Days to prevent child stunting. Mayor Enrico Corvera of the municipality of Nasipit and Municipal Nutrition Action Officers representing their LGUs received various IEC materials and measurement tools that are very useful for nutrition assessment and nutrition promotion and advocacy at the local level.

Governor Corvera stated "We have Agusan Up and nutrition program is one of the components, focusing in agricultural development." The basic foundation of the province is the health and nutrition of the children.

He recognized the roles of the municipal nutrition committees led by the mayors; the provincial government will pass policies that will support the nutrition programs but the real actions are in the municipalities. "The success of the province is in the hands of our leaders," Governor Corvera said.

He also recognized the roles of the Nutrition Action Officers and they will find ways to extend support to the nutrition program manpower.

One of the governor’s personal commitment is to improve their health and nutrition services for the people "tarungon ang nutrition program, not just for compliance but let's a have better program for better results! Let's invest for better future!" He added.

After the turnover, the NNC Caraga oriented the NAOs on the Interim Guidelines in the conduct of OPT, GMP and Nutrition Screening. The guidelines are in line with the provisions of DOH-Department Circular 2020-0167 Continuous Provisions of Essential Health Services during the COVID-19 Epidemic and DOH-Department Memorandum 2020-0237 Interim Guidelines for the Delivery of Nutrition services in the Context of COVID 19 Pandemic under Growth and Development Monitoring and Promotion.

OIC-RNPC Laquihon also informed the MNAOs that NNC Caraga is willing to provide them technical assistance to ensure the important interventions for nutrition programs are integrated to the Annual Investment Program (AIP) and Local Development Investment Program (LDIP) by capacitating their local nutrition committees.



𝐎𝐧𝐥𝐢𝐧𝐞 𝐃𝐢𝐬𝐬𝐞𝐦𝐢𝐧𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧 𝐅𝐨𝐫𝐮𝐦 𝐨𝐧 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐑𝐞𝐬𝐮𝐥𝐭𝐬 𝐨𝐟 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝟐𝟎𝟏𝟗 𝐄𝐱𝐩𝐚𝐧𝐝𝐞𝐝 𝐍𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧𝐚𝐥 𝐍𝐮𝐭𝐫𝐢𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧 𝐒𝐮𝐫𝐯𝐞𝐲 (𝐞𝐍𝐍𝐒) 𝐟𝐨𝐫 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐏𝐫𝐨𝐯𝐢𝐧𝐜𝐞 𝐨𝐟 𝐀𝐠𝐮𝐬𝐚𝐧 𝐃𝐞𝐥 𝐍𝐨𝐫𝐭𝐞.
Results of the 2019 National Nutrition Survey were presented particularly on the nutrition situation of the province that affects the preschool children, school children, pregnant women, lactating women, adults and senior citizen including the status of food security.
Mr. Laurito reiterated that the results of the eNNS survey of the province shall be used as reference to re-direct their nutrition actions toward addressing the malnutrition problem that affects the vulnerable group. SB Calo also stressed that nutrition policies will be passed to support the proposed provincewide dietary supplementation program and livelihood program to improve the nutrition situation and food security.
OIC-NPC Retsebeth M. Laquihon of NNC-Caraga in her Call to Action presentation highlighted to direct nutrition efforts to PPAs in PPAN 2017-2020 specifically the implementation of critical interventions in the First 1000 days and encourage the LGUs to invest for nutrition by ensuring that LNAPs shall be integrated in their AIP, CDP and PDPFP.
DOST-FNRI Deputy Director Dr. Anthony P. Calibo concluded to utilize nutrition data in eNNS for nutrition program planning, policy formulation and advocacy for support.

OIC RNPC Laquihon discussing nutrition programs with DOH XIII Director Llacuna Jr last January 20 2021 at DOH Caraga, Butuan CityJanuary 20, 2021, Butuan City- OIC-Regional Nutrition Program Coordinator Retsebeth M. Laquihon of NNC Caraga had a First Coordination Meeting for CY 2021 with Caraga Regional Nutrition Committee Chairperson, DOH Director Jose R. Llacuna, Jr for the collaborative efforts in the implementation of nutrition program between NNC and DoH in the region.

OIC-RNPC Laquihon gave updates on the proposed establishment of NNC Caraga supported by RDC Resolution no.57 s2020. RD Llacuna is giving his full support for this endeavour to strengthen and sustain the operationalization and management of nutrition program in Caraga.

Director Llacuna added that DoH is purchasing Allen sticks to augment the needs of the LGUs for nutrition assessment. Nutrition assessment is one of the vital steps in nutrition program planning and management; it can be used to identify high-risk groups and priority areas for nutrition interventions. This will also serve as basis for identifying immediate and underlying factors in malnutrition according to the WHO-CGS nutrition indicators.