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PNAAF 3rd International Conference: "Changing Healthcare System: Opportunities in Nursing Practice and Leadership"

The Philippine Nurses Association of America Foundation (PNAAF) in collaboration with Filamer Christian University College of Nursing (FCUCN) held the 3rd International Collaborative Conference on January 22 to 23, 2015 at Kapis Mansions, Capiz, Roxas City, Philippines. The theme of the conference was “Changing Healthcare system: Opportunities in Nursing Practice and Leadership”.

 

The successful conference was chaired by Araceli D. Antonio (PNAAF) and Dr. Nelly Guillen (FCUCN).  The pre-conference activities held on January 21, 2015 were chaired by Ernie Rosas (Feeding Program) and Ted Ray Llasos (Educational Forum).

 

The conference was attended by delegations from the different chapters of the Philippine Nurses Association of America (PNAA), headed by PNAAF President Ernie Rosas. The Philippine attendees were professional nurses from academia and hospitals, and nursing students. The extraordinary coordinating skills of Ted Ray Llasos and Araceli Antonio, with the tireless leadership of Drs. Guillen and Chris Sorongon and the conference Working Committee Members yielded positive outcomes.

The first day of the conference started with the entrance of colors and the procession of the Speakers and Officers; Doxology by Pastor Jasper Martin; Philippine National Anthem and Capiz Hymn by FCU Chorale; the inspiring Welcome Address of Ernie Rosas, BSN, RN, PNAAF President; the warm address of Dr. Domingo Diel, Jr., FCU President; and the compelling speech of Dr. Chris Sorongon, of "Why You Chose to be a Nurse." He cited the words of Pope Francis, who recently visited the Philippines, "Do you feel with the poor? Then do something for the poor."

 

The poster presentations received raving reviews; and the judges admitted they had difficulty in the selection of the winners. Becky Graboso, PNAAF Trustee who was one of the judges,   commented that the posters were of high quality and the studies were impressive.

The next speaker was Thankam Sunil, PhD, MPH, who discussed "Maternal and Child Health (MCH) Issues in Developing Countries." He emphasized that "when MCH is outstanding, the family is also outstanding." For high risk regions in the Philippines, he suggested micro/macro level changes along with structural changes at the grass roots level. Dr. Sunil was followed by M. Danet  Lapiz-Bluhm, PhD, RN, who talked about "Mental Health Issues following Trauma Exposure, i.e. Haiyan." She mentioned the death toll of 6200 that resulted from the Haiyan disaster which exposed the Filipinos to trauma. She added that Americans are also experiencing trauma due to several wars that result in mental health issues.

 

The Dream Project PH and Project H2O were presented by Primitivo Paypon, Jr. and Christian James Nazaretj. The audiovisual presentations of their projects were very inspiring and showed that they were much needed by communities. Aisa Mijeno amazed the audience with her "Sustainable Alternative Lighting Technology (SALT)”.  She demonstrated her invention of how a very cheap mixture of salt and water can produce light!  A young John Paul Maunes spoke passionately about "Bridging the Deaf and the Hearing." He showed the audience how to make the "Filipino Sign Language."

 

On the next day,  Dr. Chris Sorongon gave a recap of the first day’s session. He was followed by Dr. Annabelle Borromeo, SVP, Chief Hospital Operation, St. Luke's Medical Center, who presented "Using Patient Safety Organization to Promote Quality, Safety and Efficiency in Health Care." She offered solutions to abandon the blame game and to establish a wide systemic change using principles of safety.

Dula Pacquiao, EdD, RN, Professor, Rutgers University, School of Nursing, and former PNAAF Board of Trustee, discussed "The US Affordable Health Care Act" with confidence and clarity. She covered global population trends, concerns of healthcare in the US and the Philippines, reform initiatives and emerging opportunities, and demands for professional nurses.

 

Rebecca Graboso, DNP, RN, FNP-BC, PNAAF Board of Trustee, performed an excellent presentation of “Cardiovascular Diseases and Role of the Advanced Practice Nurse in Disease Management and Secondary Prevention." She highlighted the current best practices in treatment, management, and care of patients with cardiovascular conditions.

 

The afternoon session began with Dr. Ryan Guinaran's "Doctors for Indigenous Health and Culturally Competent Training Education Networking and Governance (DITENG)."He described the doctor as "Manlulusog instead of Manggagamot" and called for "Social Oncologist to treat

Social Cancer."  Guia Caliwanagan, MAN, RN, Member, Virginia Board of Nursing spoke about "Developing a Regulatory Decision Pathway." She discussed globalization and nursing regulation; global standards; and regulatory frameworks: local and global relevance. Luz Llasos, PhD, RN presented "Holistic Approach to Care of the Elderly." She delivered her the topic with her usual no-nonsense, direct to the point, practical and very easy to understand elderly care. Karen Michelle Cendana, RN, CRN, discussed "Interventional Radiology" in a lively and captivating manner. The last speaker was our very own Araceli Antonio, MS, RN, who finished the conference with "End of Life: Ethical Issues, Planning and Care." She used effective participatory and interactive strategies to get the audience actively involved in the issues.

 

After the open forum and Award Ceremony, Dr. Nelly Guillen, MAN, RNA, Dean, FCU College of Nursing, Conference Co-Chair, made her closing remarks, full of thanksgiving to those who helped ensure the success of the event. Lolita Compas, PNAA Executive Director and PNAAF Board of Trustee spoke heartfelt and moving words of closing prayers! The attendees loved the colorful, intelligent, and humorous Emcee Cyrus Alcala, MAN, RN.

 

There were many positive and encouraging evaluation comments made by the participants such as: "The conference was awesome, very successful... We had great speakers, every one of them..." "I can honestly say, this will not be my first and last...Looking forward to the next and 4th ICC." "...the posters were of high quality.""It was indeed a great conference. Our Philippine counterparts were impressive and the students were awesome." Others added" great innovative speakers, very informative and interesting topics," "self awakening; learned new innovations and young Filipinos are inspiring me to think they are capable of solving problems."

 

Annie Abobo Vista, PhD, RN

PNAAF Executive Board