Rehabilitation Decade 2020-2030 in the Philippines

The Philippine Academy of Rehabilitation Medicine (PARM) – President Dr. Filipinas G. Ganchoon headed the launch of Rehabilitation Decade 2020-2030 yesterday February 25, 2020 at SMX Convention Center, SM Bacolod, Philippines. The Rehabilitation Decade 2020-2030 enjoins the medical community and the general public to support PARM’s advocacy to enhance awareness and give access to affordable physical rehabilitation service through Universal Health Care. 


“The Rehabilitation Decade 2020-2030 : Optimizing Function Overcoming Disability” highlights the importance of coordinated and concerted action to scale up rehabilitation services to address the profound global unmet need.


PARM Rehabilitation Strategic plan 2020-2030 has five strategies: 1. Promotion and Prevention, 2. Research and Information, 3. Governance and Legislation, 4. Universal Health Care and 5. Strengthen health systems through linkages. 


PARM promotion and prevention campaign started with promotion on PRM through its PWD People with Destiny project with the National Council for Disability Affairs during the National Disability Prevention and Rehabilitation Week which  was held last July 2019. PARM conducted a nationwide lay fora and free clinic for people with disabilities.  PARM also had the Super Seniors Project with the Office of Senior Citizens Affairs which helped promote physical rehabilitation services as a way for the elderly to optimize function throughout their lifespan. 

PARM promotes physical rehabilitation awareness through its strong online presence through its website (, PARM App, Docquity Online learning platform, PARM Social media campaign through its FB Page Philippine Academy of Rehabilitation Medicine. For patients in geographically remote areas, PARM is developing its telerehabilitation services through the Philippine General Hospital Dept of PRM as well as with Philippine Telemedicine network.


PARM aims to strengthen PRM member research capacity so it conducted several research trainings through its Write Right project. It also developed PARM Clinical Practice Guideline for Stroke Rehabilitation 2nd Edition which was released January 2020 and is now readily accessible through its website PARM also has Neck Pain, Shoulder Pain, Low Back Pain and Hip Osteoarthritis Clinical Practice Guidelines which are updated every 3-5 years.  


PARM wants to promote evidence based patient care so PARM had an MOU with Cochrane Rehabilitation last June 2019 giving its PRM members  Cochrane Rehabilitation reviews. 


Dr. Stefano Negrini, Dr. Carlotte Kiekens and Dr. Julia Patrick Engkasan gave excellent presentations on   Cochrane Rehabilitation during the PARM 30th Annual Convention held February 24-27, 2020at SMX Convention Center, SM Bacolod, Philippines.

PARM created a Research subcommittee on Legislative Affairs which will conduct a nationwide study on the prevalence of disability and limitation of function as well as to determine what physical rehabilitation medicine services are needed by the population in order to optimize their function.

PARM actively participated in the amendment of Medical Act of 1959 or Physicians Act of 2019.  Their efforts were  rewarded as physical rehabilitation medicine is now part of the minimum required course for Medicine in the Philippines. Basic Physical rehabilitation medicine questions will be included in the Medical Board Examinations and the scope of medical practice was expanded to include rehabilitation. 


PARM Medical Rehabilitation Standards Act House Bill 5121 was filed in the Philippine Congress and Senate. This aims to define the standard and scope of PRM practice in the Philippines and ensures safe, quality and affordable rehabilitation service is accessible to every Filipino. 


PARM is also working for its full recognition by the Professional Regulatory Commission (PRC) and supports PRC in working towards Asean Integration by complying with Philippine Qualifications Framework for Education.


PARM aims to make rehabilitation services accessible to all Filipinos with the development of its PhilHealth Rehabilitation Health Benefit package for Universal Health Care.  PARM also supports the development of the Department of Health’s National  Rehabilitation Specialty Hospital which will help strengthen rehabilitation in the Philippine health system.


Through all these various Rehabilitation Decade 2020-2030 activities as well as other ongoing projects, PARM hopes to answer the WHO Rehabilitation 2030: Call to Action and help every Filipino optimize function and overcome disability.