National Academy of Science and Technology, Philippines

The country's premier recognition and advisory body on Science and Technology

Confernment of the newly-elected Corresponding Member, Dr.Josefino C. Comiso
L-R: NAST Acting President Acd. Fabian M. Dayrit, DOST Undersecretary for Scientific and Technological Services Dr. Carol C. Yorobe, Dr. Josefino C. Comiso and his wife Diana J. Comiso, Acd. Jaime C. Montoya
Policy Forum on Federalism in the Philippine Context
Dr. Magno explained a “Federalist Design Philippines” in the context of culture, politics, and economic conditions of the country.
Policy Forum on Federalism in the Philippine Context
Dr. Mendoza explained the rationale of decentralization bought about by federalism, which is seen as part of democratizing of the country and bringing governance closer to the people.
Policy Forum on Bataan Nuclear Power Plant: What is its Future?
Engr. Carlos M. Villaraza mainly focused his talk on various analyses to aid in evaluating the state of BNPP such as hazard-risk-vulnerability analysis, response spectrum analysis, and nonlinear time-history analysis. He explained that hazard-risk-vulnerability analysis aims to aid people to make risk-based choices to attend to vulnerabilities, mitigate hazards, and prepare for response to and recover from any hazard events.
Policy Forum on Bataan Nuclear Power Plant: What is its Future?
Acd. Alfredo Francisco Mahar As. Lagmay, member of MPSD and professor at the National Institute of Geological Sciences (NIGS) of the University of the Philippines (UP) Diliman, gave his lecture entitled, “Geological hazards of SW Natib Volcano, site of the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant, the Philippines.
Policy Forum on Bataan Nuclear Power Plant: What is its Future?
Dr. Bartolome C. Bautista, deputy director of the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), explained the current hazards information around the BNPP site.
NAST-CMU Seminar on “Why Rice is Not Good For You?”
Tree Planting in Commemoration of National Scientists
NAST PHL held a tree planting in Commemoration of the National Scientists last November 15, as part of the year-long celebration of its 40th Anniversary with the theme “40 Years in Pursuit of Excellence”
National Scientist Bienvenido Nebres, S.J. met Pope Francis during the Jesuits’ 36th General Congregation held in Rome on October 24, 2016
InterAcademy Partnership (IAP) for Health Workshop on Addressing Inequities in Health: Fostering Action on Social Determinants on October 3-4, 2016 at The Manila Hotel
The organizing committee of the workshop: (L-R) Dr. Carlo Irwin A. Panelo, Dr. Mario C. Villaverde, Dr. Fely Marilyn E. Lorenzo, National Scientist Ernesto O. Domingo, Academician Carmencita D. Padilla, and Dr. Don Eliseo Lucero-Prisno III
InterAcademy Partnership (IAPdres) for Health Workshop on Adsing Inequities in Health: Fostering Action on Social Determinants on October 3-4, 2016 at The Manila Hotel
Representatives from the academe, medical institutions, government, and national academies of science and medicine in the ASEAN region participated in the two-day workshop.
AASSA-NAST PHL Workshop on the Role of Science Academies on Sustainable Development
The Social Sciences Division (SSD) of the National Academy of Science and Technology, Philippines (NAST PHL) conducted a Round Table Discussion (RTD) on Mortality Data: Gaps and Inadequacies last November 21, 2013 at the Hyatt Hotel Manila. The RTD was organized in consideration of the challenges posted in the generation and consolidation of data on mortality.  Reliable data sets are important in the conduct of scientific research needed to benchmark public policies for the improvement of the provision and delivery of health and social services.
In the welcome remarks given by National Scientist Mercedes B. Concepcion, she stressed that the ability to have a complete civil registrationsystem and survey data sets will allow the monitoring of indicators of success in achieving the various Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). This RTD also parallels other efforts being conducted by the SSD of NAST PHL to capacitate primary and secondary stakeholders to improve maternal health and to combat HIV-AIDS, Malaria and other diseases, which are goals of MDGs  4 and 6,  respectively.
The first presentation entitled “The Dynamics of the Mortality, Population Growth and Economic Development in the Philippines” was given by Dr. Dennis S. Mapa, Associate Professor and Director for Research of the UP Diliman School of Statistics and Affiliate Associate Professor of the School of Economics.  In his presentation, Dr. Mapa stressed that the relation and implication, not only of mortality data sets but, of mortalityper se to socioeconomic facets of society such as population and economic development were reiterated.Demographic Transition, which is characterized by a significant change from  high fertility and mortality rates to low fertility and mortality rates, can be facilitated by progressive public policies through government interventions in health services, family planning and education. A stable population will allow room for a more competitive and productive working class yielding higher economic production, thus reducing poverty.An econometric model using regional and provincial data sets was also presented. The model showed causality effects between public efforts and investments on health, education and labor force participation and fertility and mortality rates. Using the model, it can be said that increasing public efforts and investment decreases both fertility and mortality rates and hence, achieving a stable population.
Academician Carmencita D. Padilla, member of the NASTPHL Health Sciences Division, presented her paper entitled, “Will the Philippines Achieve Its MDG 4 Goal? A Look at Neonatal, Infant and Child Mortality Data”.   The presentation highlighted thecurrent status of neonatal, infant and child mortality and current efforts of addressing MGD 4.As pointed out, MDG 4’s indicators include under-five mortality, infant mortality and the proportion of 1-year old children immunized against measles. Based on current reports from various primary stakeholders such as the Department of Health and the Commission on the Welfare of Children,the country  can achieve MDG  4 by 2015. Meeting these indicators will be made possible by a number of strategies employed by the Department of Healthand the National Institutes of Health. These strategies include skilled birth attendance, essential newborn care, integrated management of sick children, micronutrient supplementation, immunization and breastfeeding among others. Though the statistics and country reports made by the United Nations show positive results, a question on the accuracy of datasets has also been raised. In this regard,  Acd. Padilla encouraged summarizing data sources to come up with triangulated data sets for sound policies and programs. Further,she reiterated that the frequency of data generation plays an important role.
The last speaker was Dr. Edsel Maurice T. Salvaña, Infectious Disease Specialist, Institute of Biotechnology and Microbiology, National Institutes of Health, University of the Philippines Manila. In his presentation entitled, “The Changing Molecular Epidemiology of HIV in the Philippines: Impact on Disease Progression and Mortality”,  Dr. Salvaña gave an overview of HIV in the country. He reported that this year, an average of 14 new cases are being diagnosed daily.While globally, the cases of HIV infection dropped by 20 percent, in the Philippines ,an increase of 1250 percent over the decade was noted. The increase in the number of reports of infection cases in the country can be attributed to an increased awareness and better testing facilities along with the availability of effective treatment to counter HIV. However, theDOH estimates that only about 6-12 percent of the total number of people at risk of HIV are recorded; these are the ones that are reflected in the published official data. Another point to be considered is the discrepancy in the data reporting system due to social stigma. In conclusion, we are still far behind in meeting indicators for MDG 6.
During the open forum, various points were clarified and discussed.  Recommendations and suggestions for research were identified. Some suggestions includedexpanding the research scope of the econometric model to cover municipalities and barangays; research on congenital anomalies; research on the effects of folic acid supplementation for all reproductive age women at the community level;the development of low-cost testing of HIV; and  research on the economic impact of HIV-AIDS.
National Scientist Gelia T. Castillo in her closing remarks, stated that mortality is inevitable. On the other hand, the increase in birth rates is evitable. With studies relating the quality of women’s education to global and national issues and with a significant number of Filipino women in the work place and in academe, we can address the issues at hand. Also, NS Castillo recommended further improvement of our data sets and at the same time, that we have more faith in locally generated data .