Pursuant to Department of Health Department Circular No. 50-A, series of 1995, the whole month of May is commemorated as Natural Family Planning (NFP) Month. With the enactment and implementation of Republic Act 10354 (Responsible Parenthood and Reproductive Health Act of 2012), a landmark legislation protecting the rights on Responsible Parenthood and Reproductive Health including access to family planning methods, it is vital that this monthly campaign and its objectives are revitalized.
Family planning, the heart of POPCOM’s Philippine Population Management Program implementation, refers to “the shared responsibility of the husband and wife to determine and achieve the desired timing, spacing and number of children according to their own family life aspirations, taking into account psychological preparedness, health status, and their socio-cultural and economic capacities.”
NFP, as part of family planning, comprises of methods (Basal Body Temperature, Cervical Mucus, Sympto-Thermal, Standard Days, and Lactational-Amenorrhea) that can be used by any Filipino couple who wishes to practice family planning without using drugs or devices. Based on the 2013 National Demographic and Health Survey (NDHS), of the total women respondents who were using FP methods, 61.2% have been using any method. Of these respondents, 44.9% are using modern FP methods. Unfortunately, only 1 of the 44.9% of respondents use modern NFP methods (Standard Days and LAM).
With the given findings, the support of partner agencies and organizations will aid in increasing awareness on NFP methods to generate more couples who use these methods which are 95-99.5% effective in family planning. The institutionalization of the NFP month celebration aims to renew public interest in Natural Family Planning, educate interested couples on the advantages of NFP, recruit volunteers (individuals or organizations) for NFP advocacy and NFP teachers, and expand Program capabilities in the delivery of NFP services. Thus, we enjoin partner government agencies and local government units, civil society organizations, media, and other major stakeholders, in the commemoration of the NFP month by generating demand for information and education on family planning, to increase awareness and acceptance of family planning methods including NFP.
With these, we enjoin everyone not only in the commemoration of the NFP month, but also in achieving a better region through the advocacy towards attaining well-planned, happy, healthy, and empowered Filipino families.
A regional study conducted among youth of Central Luzon finds that mass media and Information and Communication Technology (ICT) use, as well as non-sexual risk behavior have been positively associated with the youth’s early sexual initiation.
According to Commission on Population (POPCOM) Region III Director Eleanor Cura, the said study, “Mass Media and ICT Exposure, Non-Sexual Risk Behavior and Early Sexual Initiation among the Youth in Central Luzon” revealed that while traditional mass media ultimately lose their links to the youth’s early sexual initiation, ICT use and non-sexual risk behavior variables on the other hand displayed statistically significant pattern.
Dir. Cura also mentioned that the mentioned study findings should serve as basis for a strengthened convergence not only among national government agencies and local government units but also major stakeholders such as media and people’s organizations.
REGIONAL STUDY DISSEMINATION FORUM
Based on the 2013 Youth Adult Fertility and Sexuality Study (YAFS 4) results, the said regional study authored by Felix Deocampo and Elma Laguna (from Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila and University of the Philippines-Population Institute respectively) shall be presented to POPCOM Region III’s partner agencies, local government units, youth leaders, media and other stakeholders during the YAFS 4 Regional Further Study Dissemination Forum to be held May 31, 2016 in Grace Crown Hotel, Angeles City.
The region 3 study, among other 16 regional papers, explored and discussed the current and emerging issues and concerns of young people in each region that need appropriate policy and program responses using YAFS 4 results.
ABOUT YAFS 4
A joint-project of the University of the Philippines Population Institute (UPPI) and theDemographic Research and Development Foundation(DRDF), YAFS 4 is presented in three major areas of study, namelyMedia and Lifestyle (Tweets and Likes), Non-sexual Risk Behaviors (#BISYOatbp), and Sexual Risk Behaviors (#Sexytime). Exactly 18,547 households nationwide participated in YAFS 4 co-funded by the Australian Government, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), the Department of Health (DOH), and the Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (PCHRD).
Three YAFS editions have been conducted previously to fill necessary gaps in grasping the Filipino youth’s knowledge, behavior, and attitude in various sex and sex-related issues (1982, 1994 and 2002).
February 22, 2016 - Carlo Lorenzo J. Datu
CITY OF SAN FERNANDO, Pampanga, Feb.22 (PIA) -- Commission on Population (POPCOM) recently trained select male employees of around 20 national government agencies as partners in its Responsible Parenthood-Family Planning advocacy.
“Kalalakihang Tapat sa Responsibilidad at Obligasyon sa Pamilya (KATROPA) seeks to encourage and enable men to take responsibility for their own health, sexual, and reproductive behavior as well as their social and family roles,” POPCOM Regional Director Eleanor Cura said.
“Real men in the present time applies family planning, has respect, a model to his children, applies consensus with spouse in decision-making, and does not resort to violence,” Cura added.
The KATROPA follows a module with topics on Ako Bilang Lalake, Ang Aking Sekswalidad, Malusog na Pamumuhay, Pagpapaganda ng Samahang Mag-Asawa, Pangangalaga sa Pagbubuntis ng Katuwang, Ako Bilang Ama, A Presentation on Violence Against Women, and Ako Bilang KATROPA.
Attendees are expected to conduct KATROPA activities in their respective offices as part of their Gender and Development Program. (CLJD-PIA 3)
February 19, 2016 marks the 47th anniversary of the Commission on Population (POPCOM) created through the enactment of various legislations such as Republic Act 6365, known as the Population Act of the Philippines further amended by Presidential Decrees 79 and 166. And since 1969, POPCOM has been the central policy-making, planning, coordinating and monitoring body of the Philippine Population Management Program (PPMP) in the country.
Today, POPCOM continues to be the technical resource agency in population and development integration, responsible parenthood and family planning, as well as adolescent health and youth development, with the support of government agencies, local government units, private institutions, civil society organizations, non-government institutions, and other partners in the national, regional, and local levels. It also continues to be the oversight agency of the Philippine Population Management Program.
With the PPMP, POPCOM functions with four core roles, namely policy formulation and plan development, program advocacy and communication, data information and management, as well as resource mobilization.
Working for the improvement of the quality of life of every Filipino, POPCOM continues to oversee the actualization of the PPMP in relation to the country’s agreement and contribution to the International Conference on Population and Development Programme of Action, the Sustainable Development Goals, and the current administration’s Universal Health Care (Kalusugang Pangkalahatan) Program envisioned to provide “every Filipino the highest possible quality of health care that is accessible, efficient, equitably distributed, adequately funded, fairly finance, and appropriately used by an informed empowered public.”
Thus, we enjoin all partner agencies, local government units, civil society organizations, and other concerned groups to commemorate the 46th anniversary of POPCOM by supporting and taking part in all programs, projects, and activities under the PPMP that aims to reach more adolescents, couples, and communities. With the help of everyone, we will be able to fully materialize a vision of happy, healthy, empowered, and well-planned Filipino families.