Information and Communications Technology (ICT) is now allowing persons with disabilities (PWDs) to become productive members of society, allowing them to work from home without having to commute to work.
Online freelance work is one such ICT innovation that skilled PWDs can use to earn income and become financially independent. It is also consistent with the Philippines reputation of being one of the leading destinations for information and communications technology business process outsourcing.
Online freelance work, officially called “impact sourcing” is a growing trend in the Philippines, with around 100,000 Filipinos now doing online freelance work for various clients. Impact sourcing will be featured extensively in an upcoming ICT Jobs and Skills Fair for PWDs entitled “Work Anywhere Through ICT”. The event is organized by the ICT Office of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) and the National Council for Disability Affairs (NCDA) in cooperation with various PWD groups, ICT industry associations and SM North Edsa, the official event venue.
According to Ms. Bettina Quimson of the DOST – ICT Office said that; “Persons with disabilities who have difficulty in mobility like our wheelchair users and the blind, to some extent, can already take advantage of the limitless jobs available online”
Other than the usual ICT job fair the event will feature technologies that help PWDs become productive, there will also be testimonials of ICT enabled persons with disabilities who have learned to use ICT to their advantage.
About DOST-ICTO – The Information and Communications Technology Office of the Department of Science and Technology is the Philippine Government’s lead agency on ICT related matters. Its primary thrusts are in the ICT Industry Development, eGovernment, ICT policy development, Internet for all and Cybersecurity.
About NCDA – The National Council on Disability Affairs (NCDA) is the national government agency mandated to formulate policies and coordinate the activities of all agencies, whether public or private, concerning disability issues. As such, the NCDA is the lead agency tasked to steer the course of program development for persons with disabilities and the delivery of services to the sector.
MANILA, Philippines – The weather disturbance located east southeast of Hinatuan, Surigao del Sur weakened into a tropical storm on Friday (February 19) afternoon.
But according to state weather bureau PAGASA, tropical storm Auring may re-intensify into severe tropical storm prior to its landfall over Caraga Region on Sunday (February 21).
PAGASA noted also that the possibility of TS Auring developing into a typhoon is now less likely.
Tropical cyclone wind signal (TCWS) No. 1 (30-60 km/h winds prevailing or expected in 36 hours) remains in effect over the following areas:
• Visayas Southern Leyte and the southeastern portion of Eastern Samar
• Mindanao Dinagat Islands, Surigao del Norte, Surigao del Sur, Agusan del Norte, Agusan del Sur, Davao Oriental, Davao de Oro, Davao del Norte, Davao City, Camiguin, the western portion of Misamis Oriental and the western portion of Bukidnon)
The public and the disaster risk reduction and management council concerned are advised to take appropriate actions and monitor updates through PAGASA’s official website regarding the weather system.
MANILA, Philippines — The national government assures that experts are carefully studying the available efficacy and safety data of every developed vaccine specifically against coronavirus disease (COVID-19) from any manufacturer.
This was the response from the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Philippine Council for Health Research and Development regarding reports that the COVID-19 vaccine from China’s Sinovac Biotech is only 50% effective based on the late-stage trial result done by the Butantan Institute in Brazil.
This is way below the efficacy rate of the vaccines developed in the United States and the United Kingdom.
“Hindi pa natin nakikita ang data. It has to be reviewed by the Food and Drug Administration kahit na lumalabas sa press, ganito ang kanilang efficacy,” explained DOST -PCHRD Executive Director Jaime Montoya.
“We have to verify those data. So until such time na na-review natin ang data, we cannot make any conclusions,” he said.
Montoya stressed, however, that based on the standards set by the World Health Organization (WHO), 50% efficacy is still acceptable in terms of minimum standards of a vaccine.
He added that should vaccine developers Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna submit their application for use in the Philippines, it is likely that they would be the first to get emergency use authorization from the government.
This is if the negotiation on vaccine procurement would be finalized soon with the vaccine suppliers.
“Dalawa pa lang po ang naii-issuehan ng EUA ng isang stringent regulatory authority. Meaning the US, iyan ang Pfizer-BioNTech at Moderna. So if they’re going to pursue their application here in the Philippines, for the EUA also in the Philippines, then malamang sila ang mauuna na magiging available,” Montoya said.
As of this writing, DOST-PCHRD said there is no report yet that the new strain of COVID-19 affecting the UK has entered the country.
Currently, they are conducting random surveillance among COVID-19 positive tests to detect any trace of the new strain in the Philippines.
“Tayo po ay mino-monitor natin randomly ang mga viruses na nakikita natin sa Pilipinas with SARS-COV-2 through the Philippine Genome Center,” he concluded. MNP (with reports from Rosalie Coz)
MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Science and Technology’s (DOST) STAMINA4Space Program announced on Monday (December 14) that the 4th Joint Global Multi-Nation Birds Satellite or BIRDS-4 project is now on the website of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).
According to NASA, the BIRDS-4 satellites are deployed in the fourth round of a project launched by researchers or students from Japan, the Philippines, and Paraguay.
The Philippines’ Maya-2, a cube satellite (CubeSat) that was developed by Filipino students in Kyushu Institute of Technology in Japan, is part of the BIRDS-4 project.
The satellite, one of the three 1U CubeSats, will be launched to the International Space Station (ISS) in 2021, along with the other two that were developed by Japan and Paraguay.
Its predecessor Maya-1, successfully completed its mission and flew back to Earth’s atmosphere on November 23, after staying in orbit for about 2 years and 4 months.
Maya-2 is the product of the Philippines’ first inter-university satellite project and it will incorporate more advanced technology demonstration missions than Maya-1.
On its website, NASA said that the mission of the BIRDS-4 satellites is to test commercial off-the-shelf components, as well as new technologies such as Perovskite solar cell and antenna using the satellite structure to prove their worthiness in space.
“BIRDS-4 deploys during the JEM Small Satellite Orbital Deployer-16 (J-SSOD-16) micro-satellite deployment mission, is handled by the Japanese Experiment Module Remote Manipulator System (JEMRMS), and launches to the International Space Station aboard the NG-15 Cygnus Cargo Vehicle,” NASA added. –MNP / Raymund David
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