Mindanao's 1st Newborn Screening Center Opens in Davao!

Great news for parents — and babies — in Davao and neighboring provinces! A Newborn Screening Center, said to have the capacity to test 50,000 samples per year, has recently opened at the Davao Medical Center.

newborn screeningThis is the first of its kind in Mindanao and only the third in the Philippines. The two other centers are in the University of the Philippines in Manila and in the West Visayas State University Medical Center in Iloilo.

Newborn Screening is the procedure that tests newborn babies on their second or third day of life to determine treatable genetic, endocrinologic, metabolic and hematologic diseases that may lead to mental retardation or even death. This is a well-adopted practice all over the world, although countries may differ in diseases being  screened.

This is a welcome development for the city, which has also recently offered painless mammography to our women.

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  1. Mabuti naman. Sa Manila pa kami nagpa-test nito last year eh.

  2. October 1, 2009. Davao Doctors Hospital receives the “Newborn Screening Exemplary Performance Award” at the Heritage Hotel, Manila, Philippines. The said award is given by the Newborn Screening Reference Center, National Institutes of Health-Philippines (in coordination with the Department of Health) in recognition of health facilities that help the government in improving the health of the Filipino people through their contributions in the field of newborn screening advocacy, education, implementation and institutionalization of the program.

    DDH has earned this award through its constant efforts, screening 90% or above of its total live births for the past two consecutive years (2007-2008). “It is our commitment as an institution to continually support the newborn screening program of the DOH and provide assurance of a follow-up and recall. This is to ensure the prompt and appropriate management of babies with positive screen,” says NBS Coordinator Mariebel Atienza.

    Every baby born in DDH is offered the opportunity to undergo newborn screening and be spared from heritable conditions that can lead to mental retardation and death if undetected and untreated. The various units of DDH, spearheaded by the Pediatrics, Obstetrics-Gynecology and Pathology departments, are in continuous collaboration, making it possible to reinforce knowledge and enhance skills in this field through seminars, technical meetings and special mothers’ classes. This is in line with organization’s direction to comply with the mandate of the DOH as per Newborn Screening Act of 2004.

    DDH is the first health institution in Davao City to be given an “Exemplary Performance Award”. The award was received by DDH’s President & CEO, Mr. Andres M. Licaros together with Chief Medical Technologist, Ms. Joann Liwag.

    “We are proud to see our efforts bearing fruit,” Mr. Licaros exclaims. “We only want to give the people of Mindanao the highest level of caring possible and there is no better gratification than knowing that we have somewhat made a positive impact on the lives of those who come to our hospital”.

    For more information on the Newborn Screening Program, please contact NBS coordinators Mariebel A. Atienza, RN, Nadine C. Mamontuan, RN, or Shiela Marie de Leon, RN, of the Neonatal ICU at (082) 221-2101 local 125.

  3. ..were conducting a researched entitled ” the extent of knowledge and participation of mothers on certain barangays in our province in relation to different Variables..” quite hard but as we were doing the survey we find it satisfying as we can see, how the mother’s responded to our research…

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