Health officials recently said they have been focusing on solutions to address the high incidence of teenage pregnancy in Palawan, which they have identified as the main cause of malnutrition.
“Nakikita naming root cause sa malnutrition ay ang teen age pregnancy. Syempre, mga bata pa rin talaga yan so they have no knowledge about nutrition,” City Nutrition Action Officer Stella May Rodriguez said during this week’s Kapihan sa PIO forum.
Rodriguez, together with Provincial Nutrition Action Officer (PNAO) Rachel T. Paladan as resource speakers during the forum said one of the possible solutions is for the government to incorporate the mothers’ obligation to provide adequate nutrition to their child in receiving benefits from the 4Ps program of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).
“Minsan ang nangyayari, si teen ager, iiwan si baby sa nanay o sa lola. Si lola, walang trabaho, so walang nutrition na natatanggap, nagma malnourish ang bata,” Rodriguez said.
Palawan’s malnutrition rate has gone down from 12.54 in 2012 to 8.8 in 2017. In Puerto Princesa City, the figures also went down from 7.9 rate in 2014 to 6.66 on 2016. These government agencies however said continue to work, even in far flung barangays and municipalities to alleviate the problems of undernourished children.