DepEd launches ‘Oplan Kalusugan ‘

Published July 13, 2018, 6:36 PM

by Roel Tibay

By Merlina Hernando-Malipot

In line with its efforts to ensure that all learners are provided with the basic primary health and dental care to allow them to attain their full educational potential, the Department of Education (DepEd) on Friday officially launched its flagship health program.

(DepEd Philippines/ Facebook)
(DepEd Philippines/ Facebook)

Dubbed “Oplan Kalusugan (OK) sa DepEd,” DepEd officials along with representatives from its regional offices gather at the Pembo Elementary School in Makati City for the launch of the health program. Initially unveiled in December 2017, the said program is spearheaded by the Office of the Undersecretary for Administration, through the School Health Division of the Bureau of Learner Support Services.

“If we are to end poverty and create a better world, we have to improve our education and health programs,” said Education Secretary Leonor Briones during her speech. She added the “schools are now venues where the education and the health sectors converge to promote the health and well-being of learners and the community.”

CONVERGENCE

Undersecretary for Administration Alain Del Pascua said that the “OK sa DepEd” is not a new program but a convergence of the five major DepEd school health programs that include School-Based Feeding Program (SBFP); National Drug Education Program (NDEP); Adolescent Reproductive Health Education (ARH); Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) in Schools (WinS) Program; and medical, nursing, and dental services.

“Just like in education, health is also everyone’s concern,” said Pascua as he urged for everyone’s cooperation and participation in the program. He also noted that more than a convergence of all of DepEd’s health programs, the “OK sa DepEd” program is also “an opportunity for us to identify health concerns in our schools and also set baseline data on the health of our learners.”

Pascua noted that the information that will be gathered during the implementation of the “OK sa DepEd” program will “prove vital in the formulation of better policies and identify areas of concern.”

REGULAR ACTIVITY

In a press briefing, DepEd Undersecretary for Finance and Spokesperson Anne Sevilla noted that the “OK sa DepEd” program will be a regular activity in public schools.

“It will be conducted twice a year – in June during the enrollment and in January of the following year,” Sevilla explained. Students and pupils in public schools, she said, will undergo an annual check-up at the start of the school year then they will have a follow-up check-up in January. “This is to monitor their progress and of the effectiveness of the program as well,” she added.

The “OK sa DepEd Program” also highlights the “One Health Week” wherein a set of health activities featuring, but not limited to, the five major DepEd school health programs are conducted.

 
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