Ex DOH chief seeks to better understand different generations by leading a new national health survey
In a bid to unravel the distinct perspectives different generations of Filipinos hold on crucial aspects of life such as health, workplace well-being, relationships, media engagement, and content consumption, healthcare trailblazer PhilCare is developing a new Wellness Index survey under the guidance of former Department of Health Secretary Dr. Enrique Ona.
“Different generations have grown up in different social, economic, and technological contexts, making their values, communication styles, and preference vary significantly,” Dr. Ona says. “Understanding these differences would allow businesses and government agencies to tailor their policies and initiatives to effectively engage and resonate with each generation.”
This is the second time Dr. Ona is contributing his expertise to the groundbreaking study. He took the helm in shaping the 2021 Wellness Index titled “The Philippine Roadmap to the Next Normal,” an initiative aimed at aiding the country’s workforce, enterprises, policymakers, and other stakeholders in their transition to the post-pandemic era.
“As someone who continues to champion the cause of public health, I see the Wellness Index as an innovative endeavor that underscores the potential of data-driven approaches in steering healthcare reforms and advancing the overall wellbeing of Filipinos,” he notes.
Distinguished for his expertise in vascular surgery and organ transplantation, Dr. Ona assumed the role of DOH Secretary from 2010 to 2014. Prior to this, he held the position of executive director at the National Kidney and Transplant Institute, playing a pivotal role in its transformation into the Philippines’ first ISO-certified health institution in 2002 after being ravaged by fire.
Launched by PhilCare in 2014, the Wellness Index stands as the nation’s maiden study that seeks to explore the attitude and practices of Filipinos towards health and wellness. The second study was released in 2019, and the third called 2020 Community Quarantine Wellness Index came out at a time when COVID-19 lockdowns were in effect.
With the findings of the first Wellness Index, PhilCare introduced another innovation with the country’s very first prepaid health plans that cover different health needs and are honored in over 500 hospitals nationwide.
The 2020 Wellness Index bagged Top Division Award for Communication Research at the 2021 Quill Awards, while the 2021 Wellness Index got the Top Award in Communication Research from Quill in 2022 and was honored as Thought Leadership Campaign of the Year at the 2022 Stevie Awards.
The PhilCare Wellness Index studies also gained significant media attention. This resulted in the public gaining access to data-driven information to guide them in safeguarding their health and well-being, especially while navigating the pandemic and its societal impacts. PhilCare shared the studies’ outcomes with multiple government entities to aid them create evidence-backed policies and initiatives.
“Understanding generational differences enables individuals and organizations to adapt and make informed decisions that positively impacts various aspects of life,” Dr. Ona says.
“I look forward to what I and many others will discover in the next Wellness Index.”