Tuberculosis, the chronic infectious disease caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis has reportedly gone down in prevalence in the Philippines, but there are an estimated 450,000 people still suffering from the disease. Of this number, a staggering 135,000 don’t seek medical treatment offered by the government. In spite of free diagnostic and treatment programs available, about 30% with TB choose to ignore the disease until the condition becomes complicated and hard to treat. Cultural barriers and stigma are reasons offered for the people’s refusal for TB treatment.
For the full automation of the 2010 national election, Pres. Gloria M. Arroyo signed the budget of P11.3 billion. Although it is unclear how the government will implement the modernization, the upgrade of the electoral counting system is hoped to prevent the rampant cheating in the election process. At the late hour of the Arroyo’s presidency, many still doubt her winning in the last ballot.
According to the SWS, 15% of Filipinos (2.9 million families) reported of being hungry for at least once in a period of three months. The survey taken in February 20-23 was an improvement from December’s finding of 23.7% (4.3 million families.) It is unclear what kind of food poor Filipinos eat with their meager food budget.
The World Bank estimates this amount of remittance to developing countries by OFWs—-gains from employment abroad. This is lower and less rosy than the expected amount of $305 billion—an effect of the global financial crisis. In 2008, 1.376 million Filipinos went abroad to work in more than 190 host nations. They sent back an estimated US$16.4 billion to the country, the highest in history so far.
The number of workers who lost the jobs, raising the unemployment rate to 7.7% in January, 2009, according to Pres. Gloria M. Arroyo. This adds up to the 2.9 million of jobless individuals which rose by 0.3% from last year’s data. As a cost-saving measure, the president announced the cancellation of the independence parade this year which costs P30 million to stage. (Photo Credit: =0=