- Category: News
- Hits: 1173
Alarming incidences of discrimination against medical frontliners have been reported and has prompted authorities to issue warnings against perpetrators of such reprehensible acts. There have also been reports of discrimination directed against those who have been infected or only suspected of having it. Because of this social stigma, persons with symptoms of Covid-19 hesitate to report their condition to health officials due to the fear of discrimination, thereby making efforts to stop the spread of the disease more difficult for health authorities.
A new mobile application developed through the support of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) may help remove that fear as it will allow persons who experience signs of the coronavirus disease to report their conditions via text message directly to their local government unit.
Simply called Tanod COVID, the development of the system was made possible through the DOST – Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (DOST-PCHRD) in collaboration with the Department of Health, Ateneo De Manila University and the University of the Philippines. It is one of the features of the Feasibility Analysis of Syndromic Surveillance using Spatio-Temporal Epidemiological Modeller or FASSSTER app.
In Region III, the DOST worked with the local government unit of Pulilan, Bulacan for the pilot implementation of Tanod COVID. Mrs. Angelita Q. Parungao, Provincial Science and Technology Director, said that her office has initially conducted a briefing for municipal officials of Pulilan on the features of the apps and how this can assist the LGU in mapping out strategies to combat the disease. She said, “Through Tanod COVID, a person who may be infected with the coronavirus may report symptoms via text message to a dedicated number assigned to a particular LGU”. “The text message is free,” she added. Just recently, Globe Telecom has committed to provide the LGUs and their constituents access to the app free of charge.
The LGUs may also easily determine high risk areas in their locality where a lot of reports are received, thus allowing the LGU to know which communitites need priority during mass testing of Covid-19. This will also make the contact-tracing and monitoring of cases easier.
The app has already been adopted by LGUs in other parts of the country and DOST Secretary Fortunato dela Pena has earlier expressed optimism that Tanod Covid will be adopted by more LGUs. The system can also be used whenever there is a public health emergency.
- Category: News
- Hits: 929
Deployment of Compact Impeller Type Brown Rice Mill (CIBRM) to CEST beneficiaries in different provinces of Region 3
Studies had shown that consumption of brown rice could enhance the nutritional status of Filipinos. Several government initiatives to promote its consumption had likewise been launched in recent years.
To date, consumption of brown rice is largely limited to well to do families who have access to big grocery stores and supermarket chains. This is largely attributable to the fact that very few rice millers produce brown rice leading to its considerably higher price tags.
In order to address this concern, the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) in Central Luzon provided 24 units of village-type rice mills to selected farmer groups through the Community Empowerment through Science and Technology (CEST) program which was ably supported by Sen. Joel Villanueva.
This impeller type rice mills allow the farmer-beneficiaries to mill their own harvest saving them from costly transportation as they no longer need to bring their produce to commercial rice mills usually located in town centers. More importantly, this will give ready access to more nutritious brown rice in the rural communities where malnutrition is a problem. With the deployment of these rice mills, the DOST-III hopes to encourage more people to patronize brown rice leading to higher consumption and in turn improved nutritional status in the countryside.
This compact brown rice mill has a milling recovery of around 70% which is much higher compared to most common rice mills such as the stone disk or so-called ‘kiskisan’ which has a lower milling recovery of 50-55%. The higher recovery and more efficient milling will substantially increase the production output and income of our local rice farmers.
By empowering the rice farmers, DOST is committed to bring science closer to the people and to push every rural area to continuously grow as progressive and resilient communities. The distribution was made possible with the assistance of the Cooperative Development Authority Region III (CDA-III).
- Category: News
- Hits: 1523
DOST – III deploys two (2) units of PORTASOL to Pansinao Farmers Multi-purpose Cooperative in Pampanga, a rice and corn commodity producing cooperative.
Many of our farmers and fishermen face difficulties in drying their produce. This problem becomes even more acute as they cannot afford expensive drying facilities. So most resort to the undesirable practice of pavement drying which is not only prohibited but also result to tremendous loss in potential income.
An innovative technology using trays just might be the answer. The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) in Central Luzon has recently distributed multi-purpose solar drying trays or PORTASOL.
The trays are made of aluminum, a known good heat conductor which speeds up the drying of palay up to three times faster than pavement drying. Each tray which has a carrying capacity of 12.5 kg or ¼ cavan, can be spread out in an open field thus minimizing wastage compared to the usual practice of spreading the grains directly into the pavement. In farmhouses with limited space, they can also be stacked up to ten layers and still achieve satisfactory drying results. The trays can also be used to dry other produce like vegetables and fish.
A total of 24 units were distributed to 13 farmer and 2 fishermen groups in the whole region as part of the Expanded Implementation of the Community Empowerment through Science and Technology (CEST) program of the agency. Even with the Covid-19 pandemic raging, DOST has continuously provided the services and interventions deliverable under the program, offering a ray of hope to farmers and fishermen who are severely affected by the pandemic.
- Category: News
- Hits: 1033
San Felipe Livestock & Organic Farmers Association in Zambales receives 4 rows manual pull type rice transplanters under the DOST-Expanded CEST Program. (First picture)
One of the members of Water System of TABASACA Irrigators Association in Nueva Ecija acquaints himself on the operation of manual pull type rice transplanter (Second picture)
Filipinos are familiar with the old ditty, “planting rice is never fun,” dramatizing the backbreaking work of manually planting rice paddies under the scorching heat of the sun. But while farm mechanization have gained widespread use among our farmers, most still rely on manual planting as these equipment can be expensive.
The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) in Central Luzon hopes to make rice planting a little less physically exhausting and a lot faster through the use of pull type rice transplanters. A total of 48 units of these were distributed recently to selected farmer groups in the region’s seven provinces.
The said equipment, which can accommodate 4 rows of simultaneous transplanting with plant spacing of 20 cm and hill spacing of 18 cm, not only makes transplanting more efficient but can also reduce the cost of labor during planting season. With the use of mechanized transplanting technologies, some of the poor rice production practices in the Philippines can be eliminated, one of which is the improper plant spacing which prevents the rice plant from achieving maximum tillering levels. Proper spacing can increase the yield by 25% to 39% over improper plant spacing. This will allow the rice plant achieve maximum tiller levels and improve its productivity. Aside from ensuring optimum planting density, seedling stress caused by traditional uprooting practices are eliminated.
The distribution of the transplanters is a component of the SMARTer Hybrid Rice Production Project Phase 2 under the Expanded Implementation of the Community Empowerment through Science and Technology (eCEST) program of the agency. Aside from the transplanters, the technology intervention also include the use of appropriate hybrid rice variety, double mulching technique in seedling preparation and carrageenan plant growth promoter which are all aimed at improving the yield per hectare to up to 200 cavans. The said project is scheduled to be implemented in the different provinces in the 4th quarter of this year.
Expressing his appreciation for the DOST assistance, one of the farmer beneficiaries from Bataan, Mr. Louel Antonio of Nature’s Farming Association said, “Ang proyektong ito ng DOST ay isa sa pinakamagandang programang aking nalahukan. Sa pamamagitan nito (transplanter), mas mapapabilis ang pagtatanim at mababawasan ang gastos sa pagsasaka”.
- Category: News
- Hits: 886
For details, Click the link below