The Department of Budget and Management (DBM) commends the performance of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) and its attached agencies for attaining its targets and major outputs despite the limitations brought by the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.
Of the 19 DOST agencies, DBM lauded the Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (PCHRD) for achieving all its performance indicators committed for 2020 with an accomplishment rate of 100% to 377%, and for attaining an almost 100% budget utilization rate.
“The government appreciates the efforts of DOST in delivering its commitments in terms of the performance indicators, particularly for being an active agency in curbing the effects of the virus through its scientific intervention in medicine as well as its promotion of a better-designed, well-prepared programs and projects for the agency,” said DBM Undersecretary Tina Rose Marie L. Canda in a DBM summary report sent to DOST.
In 2020, the Council supported 36 research and development (R&D) projects implemented in response to COVID-19 and maintained its support to 138 ongoing research projects under its nine R&D priority areas, of which 22 have completed implementation in the said year. The Council also welcomed a total of 332 R&D research proposals, where 46 new projects were approved for funding and implementation.
In terms of capacity building, PCHRD has supported 53 MD-PhD in Molecular Medicine scholars in 2020, welcomed 12 new Balik Scientists, and approved 22 projects in addition to the 37 ongoing projects being supported under its Regional Research Fund Program. More so, the Council also provided important inputs to 17 legislations, filed 76 intellectual property applications, and co-organized 40 health-related webinars, among many of its information, communication, and technology transfer services.
“Our ultimate goal as the country’s lead coordinating body for health research has always been the same for the last three decades: to make life better for the Filipinos through health research-based solutions and innovations. We thank the DBM for recognizing our efforts to address the needs of our country’s health system amid major crises, including the COVID-19 pandemic. We share this recognition with our Filipino researchers, partners, and stakeholders who strive to create research-based solutions to our pressing health needs,” said PCHRD Executive Director Jaime C. Montoya.
The DBM report also highlighted that DOST supported a total of 1,267 projects in 2020, out of its target of 954 projects, and all agencies surpassed their targets including PCHRD with 207 projects implemented under the Grants-In-Aid (GIA) program. DBM also reports that all DOST agencies posted “very impressive” obligation rates under their operations.
“I believe that we have accomplished much more than what the financial and physical performance indicators present. We have put in place pioneering and strategic programs that respond to national problems particularly the COVID-19 pandemic. Our interventions have long and enduring positive impacts on the economic development, poverty reduction, and social transformation as affirmed by our various clients and stakeholders,” said DOST Secretary Fortunato T. de la Peña.
The physical performance is measured in terms of the outcome and output performance indicators committed in the Performance Informed Budget for FY 2020, while the financial performance is measured in terms of budget utilization rate both in obligation and disbursement and income performance.