10, 2021 — The Department of Education (DepEd) on Monday kicked off the celebration of One Health Week by simultaneously inaugurating 1,869 school clinics around the country as part of the School Dental Health Care Program (SDHCP).

“We find it necessary to still provide these services to learners and personnel to address the high prevalence of dental caries and other health problems during the time of the pandemic,” Education Secretary Leonor MagtolisBriones said.

Spearheaded by DepEd Bureau of Learners Support Services-School Health Division (BLSS-SHD), the SDHCP refurbished 1,706 out of the 1,869 clinics, with 1,068 equipped with newly installed dental chairs, medical consultation rooms, tools, and medical supplies.

“Today, we are certain that we are one step closer to this dream. Ang symbolic ribbon cutting ngayong araw na ito saiba’t ibang paaralan sa buong Pilipinas ay nagpapamalasng ating pagkakaisa hindi lamang para sa operations ng clinics na ating itinatag kundi gayon na rin angpagpapalakas ng delivery ng medical at dental services saating mga mag-aaral bilang bahagi ng ating basic education learning continuity plan sa School Year 2021-2022 namagbubukas sa susunod na Lunes,” Undersecretary for Administration Alain Del B. Pascua shared.

In addition, Usec. Pascua shared that health care supplies consisting of toothpaste, toothbrushes, and soaps to be distributed to 14,118,220 kinder to Grade 6 learners have been delivered.

One of the highlights of the program was the simultaneous symbolic ribbon-cutting of different school clinics live streamed via Zoom accompanied with messages from all Regional Directors

“This pandemic has made us realize the need to emphasize the establishment of our school medical and dental clinics as a foundation for a safe and healthy learning environment. This reiterated the need to strengthen the institutional system and capacities to ensure that health services are available for the reopening of schools,” BLSS-OIC Director Lope Santos III shared.

Carrying the theme Bayanihan para sa Kalusugan: OK saDepEd, sa Paaralan, at sa Tahanan, DepEd’s One Health Week is set to provide stakeholders, especially learners, key updates and initiatives of the Oplan Kalusugan (OK) saDepEd flagship program.