The Philippines

The major health problems currently affecting The Philippines according to the World Health Organization are:

  • High incidences of all key communicable diseases including measles, acute lower respiratory tract infections, hepatitis B, diphtheria, neonatal tetanus, diarrhoea, influenza, malaria and dengue fever.
  • Tubercolosis (TB) incidence is decreasing but multidrug-restistant TB prevalence is on the rise.
  • Although considered low prevalence, the Philippines has one of the fastest growing HIV epidemics in the world with a 587 per cent increase in the past five years.
  • Under-five mortality is an issue with inequities across the country. It is four to five times higher in the southern Philippines compared to Manilla. Newborn mortality accounts for 50 per cent of all under-five deaths.

HIV
The Philippines National AIDS Registry of the Department of Health reported a rapid and exponential increase in new reported HIV cases. In 2006 there was one new case of HIV detected every three days however at the beginning of 2014 that had increased to 16 cases detected everyday.

Recent data shows the HIV epidemic is concentrated among most at-risk groups, men who have sex with men, people who inject drugs and disproportionately represented among young people.

Burnet Institute is helping to address a steady rise in HIV in the Philippines through the development of a series of demonstration sites for new health service delivery models for adolescent key populations.

Maternal and newborn health
According to UNICEF, progress has been slow in the Philippines towards reaching Millennium Development Goals four and five, Reducing Child Mortality and Improving Maternal Health.

Deaths of children under five have been halved in the past 20 years but there has been a slow decline in neonatal or newborn deaths. Half of Filipino children who die before their fifth birthday are newborns.

An estimated 11 women die everyday due to complications of childbirth, and so there are concerns the Philippines may not reach the 75 per cent reduction target of maternal deaths.

Past Projects

  • HIV services for young key populations in the Philippines
    The Philippines is considering changing laws that require adolescents to seek parental consent for HIV testing. This project will explore options and contribute to better understanding of how new laws might result in improved practices.

Contact Details

For more information about our work in The Philippines, please contact:

Chad Hughes

Deputy Program Director, Disease Elimination

Telephone

+61392822214

Email

chad.hughes@burnet.edu.au