Friday, February 14, 2014

Alere: Bringing Careers in Health Care to the Philippines

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A leading health care solutions company based in the United States, Alere, which focuses on servicing patients with chronic diseases by providing them with near-patient diagnostic care and managing their supplies reorders, has come to the Philippines.

Alere Philippines has set up office at the Fort after having acquired a company established in Manila and felt it was a perfect match. They wanted to establish their service center platform here. Our English-speaking labor force as well as access to many healthcare-related graduates makes Alere's presence here logical, practical and forward-looking.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Lead a great life in spite of asthma

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I come from a family with a history of asthma. I myself had childhood asthma though not too severe and during a couple of pregnancies, it came back even if I had already outgrown it. I also had to deal with asthma during the growing years of all my kids and I have to tell you that it is no joke.

Asthma is what I call "traydor na sakit" (traitor disease). It doesn't look too alarming but in reality, it has been the cause of many deaths even among young people. The triggers can happen any time and anywhere -- something you eat, something in the air -- and suddenly your airways start to constrict. You start having difficulty breathing and it creates panic and pressure on the heart as well. Several celebrities in the past died young just because of an asthma episode, including a young model.

At a recent GSK event, I listened to one of the GSK doctors, Dr. Bernadette Arcilla, talk about asthma. It affects about 10.7M people in the Philippines now. 250,000 annual deaths worldwide are attributed to asthma. Of those deaths, majority are 45 years old and older. With children, asthma is the most frequent cause of absenteeism from school, emergency visits and hospitalization. Scary stats. I can remember so many instances when we'd rush to the emergency room of the hospital because one of our kids could not breathe well and would be wheezing. We always had a nebulizer with us at home and on trips. When they were older, they had to be taught to use an inhaler and carry this with them all the time.

But asthmatics are fighting back. And, hopefully, winning the war against asthma. That is a very important inspirational message for so many Pinoys who are similarly affected by asthma. Your life is not curtailed by it. You can still live a meaningful life and engage even in sports in spite of your condition.

At the event, two local celebrities, who were asthmatics, shared about their own battles against asthma  -- Kim Chiu and Arnel Pineda of Journey.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Steveston Pizza: From Canada to the Philippines

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Who says NO to pizza? Ah, ah, NOT ME! And not when I am invited to try out Steveston Pizza which originated from Canada!

First let me tell you that I had no idea what Steveston Pizza was offering (but the thought of eating pizza appealed a lot to me!). Second, I was eager to check out UP Town Center because I heard of the place from my son but did not know exactly where it was.

Suffice it to say, I was pleasantly surprised upon arriving at the place. Apparently, UP Town Center is now the newest watering hole and the converging place for the students of UP Diliman, Ateneo and Miriam College.

I was early so I did some work at J.Co nearby. Noemi joined me shortly and we got to put in some productive time before moving over to Steveston Pizza close to lunch.

From the outside