PASIG CITY-During the second quarter of 2015, ATHAG took part in different activities and gatherings to promote traditional Hilot healing. Two of these activities were hosted by the Philippine Institute for Traditional and Alternative Health Care (PITAHC), while the others were organized by the Filipino Traditional and Integrative Healing Association and DLS-Family Life and Wellness Institute (FLWI).
Public Hearing on PITAHC Guidelines for Hilot (June 30, 2015)
The highlight of the second quarter was the public hearing for the Guidelines Implementing RA 8423 on the National Certification of Filipino Hilot Practitioners/Manghihilot and Accreditation of Hilot Training Programs and Hilot Training and Healing Centers, held on June 30, 2015 at the Philippine Institute for Traditional and Alternative Health Care (PITAHC) Conference Room.
Standard and Accreditation Division Chief Ms. Juris Triunfante explained the background of the guidelines and presented the document drafted by the Technical Working Group composed of the Association of Traditional Health Aid Givers Philippines, Inc. (ATHAG), Hilot Pinoy, and Alyansa ng Manghihilot at Albularyo (AMA).
Some forty participants, composed of traditional Hilot practitioners, advocates, practitioners of other modalities, as well as representatives from the academe and the United Healers League of the Philippines (UHLPI) attended the activity.
A lively discussion ensued, with participants contributing their ideas and suggestions about the presented draft guidelines. One of the topics that was brought up was the use of Hilot for childbirth. Ms. Triunfante explained that since there is an existing DOH administrative order that bans home births, PITAHC has to follow this. Dr. Ras further explained that while the “ban” covers activities before, during, and after childbirth, it does not cover infertility, so Hilot can continue to be performed for women who want to conceive.
Due to the number of comments and suggestions, Ms. Triunfante invited the participants to email their other comments and suggestions so that it will be taken up by the TWG. Meanwhile, a group of participants led by the TWG members met in the afternoon to further discuss the provisions of the guidelines.
Understanding the Tooth-Body Connection and the Holistic Approach in Health Management
Traditional Hilot was one of the healing modalities featured in the De La Salle-Family Life and Wellness Institute’s (FLWI) symposium held on May 11-12, 2015. The symposium, entitled “Understanding the Tooth-Body Connection and the Holistic Approach in Health Management,” was held at the SDA Theatre, De la Salle College of St. Benilde, Pasay City.
The first day of the symposium opened with a welcome address, followed by a presentation of FLWI’s philosophy and principles by Dr. Patricia C. Sison. This was followed by a talk on the naturopathic and allopathic practitioners’ approaches to diagnosis and management given by Dr. Rommel Tinio. The afternoon session was dedicated to Dr. Dawn Ewing’s lecture entitled, “The Wisdom of the Tooth.”
On the second day, the first half of the morning session focused on integrating healing modalities in the Philippine Health System. The speakers were ATHAG President Bibiano “Boy” Fajardo on traditional Hilot, Dr. Susan Balingit on Indigenous Philippine Nutrition, and Dr. Beth Micaller on Iridollogy.
After a short break, Dr. Michael Margolis took over with his lecture, “Thinking Outside the Mouth—-The Clinical Correlation of Biological Dentistry and Your Patient’s Health.”
To cap off the symposium, certificates were given to the speakers.
3rd Annual Convention of Filipino Traditional and Alternative Healing Association
ATHAG President Bibiano “Boy” Fajardo was invited to speak about traditional Hilot during the Filipino Traditional and Integrative Healing Association, Inc.’s 3rd Annual Convention. With the theme, “Looking Forward to the Practice of Complementary Medicine,” the convention was held on May 9, 2015 at the Occupational Safety and Health Center auditorium.
PITAHC Forum on the Role of Traditional Modalities
Some twenty-one participants joined the Forum on the Role of Traditional Modalities held on April 23, 2015 at the audio-visual room of the Philippine Institute for Traditional and Alternative Health Care (PITAHC) in Quezon City.
PITAHC Director Dr. Isidro Sia facilitated the discussion, which was participated in by representatives of various healers’ groups such as the Association of Traditional Health Aid Givers Philippines, Inc. (ATHAG), United Healer’s League of the Philippines (UHLPI), Hilot Pinoy, Alyansa ng Manghihilot and Albularyo, and Union Espiritista Cristiana de Filipinas, Inc. (UECFI). Representatives from the research/academic sector were also there like the DLS-Family Life and Wellness Institute and the Health Futures Foundation, as well as independent researchers.
Dr. Sia explained PITAHC’s desire to identify safe and effective practices of the traditional modalities of healing in the Philippines. Mr. Joey Gutierrez of UHLPI that before this can be done, there should first be a framework for recognizing traditional healers. ATHAG founding President Bibiano “Boy” Fajardo emphasized the need to recognize and promote the true tradition(s) of healing that have been handed down through the generations. Towards the end of the meeting, a committee was formed to further look into this topic.