Paris, France — Researchers and experts from the Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (PCHRD) and the French National Institute of Health and Medical Research (Inserm) came together for a joint scientific seminar on 13 November 2019 at the Inserm headquarters.
The seminar was held in line with the implementation of the Philippines-France Program of Cooperation (POC) on Science, Technology, and Innovation signed by Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Secretary Fortunato dela Peña and Minister for Higher Education, Research, and Innovation Frédérique Vidal on 23 May 2019.
At the seminar, the participants exchanged views on the mutually-agreed themes of emerging infectious diseases, genomics, and environmental health. The participants agreed to continue discussions to identify next steps and further areas of collaboration, including possible joint research projects in the future. The DOST-PCHRD offered to host the next joint scientific activity with Inserm in the Philippines.
The Philippine scientific delegation was composed of the following officials: Dr. Jaime C. Montoya, Executive Director of the DOST-Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (PCHRD); Dr. Carmencita D. Padilla, Professor and Chancellor University of the Philippines Manila; Dr. Teodoro J. Herbosa, Executive Vice President of the University of the Philippines; Dr. Eva Maria C. dela Paz, Executive Director of the National Institutes of Health and University of the Philippines Manila; Prof. Romeo R. Quizon, Associate Professor of the College of Public Health, University of the Philippines Manila; Dr. Leo DP. Cubillan, Director of the Philippine Eye Research Institute, National Institutes of Health, and University of the Philippines Manila; Dr. Paolo Antonio S. Silva, of the Philippine Eye Research Institute, National Institutes of Health, University of the Philippines Manila; and Rogelio V. Guaring II, Science Research Specialist of DOST-PCHRD.
The delegation also conducted visits to Institut de la Vision, the largest eye-treatment and research facility in Europe on 12 November 2019; and to Institut Imagine, a leading research and healthcare facility on genetic diseases housed at the campus of the Necker Enfants Malades Hospital. During these visits, the participants discussed possible training exchanges and research collaboration between Philippine and French scientists and researchers.
Both sides also agreed to utilize the Philippine-French “Hubert Curien Partnership-Science for the People” program to facilitate the initial exchange of scientists and researchers.
Aside from assisting the delegation in organizing the seminar and meetings, the Philippine Embassy in Paris will also assist the DOST and PCHRD in carrying out initiatives to deepen PH-FR cooperation in science, technology, and innovation.
Inserm is the top biomedical research organization in Europe and number two in the world after the American National Institutes of Health, with nearly 12,000 publications a year.