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Getting early and regular prenatal care improves the chances of a healthy pregnancy, doctors said Saturday during the conduct of the INA.Ruga project, an initiative for pregnant mothers to celebrate International Women’s Month.

Dr. Eunice Herrera, chief quarantine facility officer for the City Health Office (CHO) said one of the best ways to ensure a successful birth is to have a healthy pregnancy, which can start even before conceiving with a pre-pregnancy care visit to the doctor.

“Ang pagdadalang tao ay isa sa mga napaka-importanteng hamon para sa ating mga mommy dahil ang magiging outcome ng pagbubuntis ay nakasalalay sa ating pagpapa prenatal kaya importante na regular na magpa-prenatal ang mga buntis para maging healthy si baby at ang mga mommy ay maiwasang magkaroon ng complication related sa kanilang pagbubuntis at panganganak,” Herrera said on March 19 during the INA.Ruga project of the JCI Puerto Princesa Peacock, Inc. (JCIPPPI or Peacock Jaycees) at SM City Puerto Princesa on March 19, Saturday.

INA.Ruga is a project of the Peacock Jaycees, which provided free prenatal checkups, planned parenthood consultations, and other services to mothers, said local chapter president Alyssa Rocamora.

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Regular prenatal examinations during pregnancy, according to Herrera, will help discover any concerns early on and lower the risk of pregnancy and birth complications.

“Ang purpose nito ay mabigyan sila ng advice, ma-screen sila as low risk or high risk para magabayan sila sa kanilang pagbubuntis,” Herrera said.

Dr. Marie Andal, coordinator of the Philippine Obstetrical and Gynecological Society, Inc., Southern Tagalog Chapter, (POGS STC), said after fighting the COVID-19 pandemic, they are now able to hold programs again for pregnant women.

“Nakakatuwa kasi after two years puwede na tayong mag-conduct na ganitong activity. Importante na malaman ng mga buntis na kahit pandemic ay kailangan talaga ‘yong prenatal checkup nila like every trimester kailangan magpa-consult. Kailangan nakadalawang checkup sila bago sila manganak para namomonitor si baby at para rin safe ang kanilang pagbubuntis at panganganak,” she said.

“Ngayong pandemic na stress tayo at nagkaroon ng anxiety at ‘yong iba na-depress talaga. Kaya mahirap para sa mga nanay kaya with the help of our health workers ay nakakausap at natutulungan sila. Kung nahihirapan ay mayroon tayong professional health workers na puwede nila puntahan para makatulong sa pinagdadaanan ng mga buntis,” Andal said.

Rocamora said as part of the INA.ruga program, which aims to provide maternal health care to pregnant women, over 40 pregnant women were given free prenatal checkups, free family planning consultations, as well as free supplements and meals by the Peacock Jaycees and its partners.

She added that their project’s goal is to help pregnant women spot problems that may lead to poor pregnancy.

“Prenatal care gives the mom the time to know more about pregnancy and delivery. Knowing what to expect can help a her relax and make the best decision for herself and her baby,” she said.

The event was co-hosted by the City of Puerto Princesa Health Office, Roots of Health, Ace Medical Center, and the Philippine Society of Ultrasound in Obstetrics and Gynecology (PSUOG), as well as Palawan News.

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