DAVAO City boasts of the only standalone Under Five Clinic Program in Mindanao, as bared by an official from the City Health Office (CHO).
Dr. Annaliza Malubay, the program head of the Under Five Clinic at CHO, explained in a radio interview on Wednesday morning, January 3, 2024, that while the Under Five Clinic Program is a component of all health centers nationwide, in Davao City, it stands alone as a dedicated program.
“Last March ang atoang under five first time nga naa tay ginatawag nga standalone, nga separate gyud siya nga under five facility, facility gyud siya nga solely dedicated para sa mga under five (In March, our under-five program became standalone for the first time, meaning it is a separate facility exclusively dedicated to children under five years old),” Malubay said.
Although the Under Five Program is part of all the health centers and barangay health centers in the Philippines, in Mindanao only Davao City has its Under Five Clinic as a standalone program.
While the Under Five Program is integrated into health centers and barangay health centers throughout the Philippines, Davao City uniquely features a standalone Under Five Clinic.
The clinic specifically serves children aged zero to five, targeting this age group due to their vulnerability to diseases, given their underdeveloped immune systems during this rapid growth stage.
Children aged five and above are typically considered school-age.
She underscored the importance of monitoring nutrition for this age group, as malnutrition can have irreversible effects once it occurs. Common concerns among parents of children aged zero to five include cough, fever, diarrhea, ear infections, and loss of appetite.
The standalone facility is situated in front of Magsaysay Park, next to the Bureau of Fire Protection-Davao Region (BFP-Davao). The building, formerly a Covid-19 testing facility, has been repurposed as the Under Five Clinic. Services provided include medical consultation, immunization, nutritional status monitoring, and education and counseling for parents or guardians.
Despite the presence of the standalone facility, the Under Five Program remains accessible in all health centers and barangay health centers.
The clinic officially opened its doors on April 8, 2023, providing parents with an additional avenue for accessing healthcare for their children under five.
Operating from Monday to Friday, the clinic also conducts immunizations on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday. RGP