Tabaco City launches PH’s first-ever enhanced CBMS

Polangui, Albay—Tabaco city officials and stakeholders officially launched the first-ever Community-Based Monitoring System (CBMS) dashboard in the Philippines on Thursday, Feb. 29. 

The CBMS dashboard serves as a digital data enhancement system tailored for local governments, aimed at addressing climate change and health-related concerns. It enables the visualization of data impact at the barangay level, facilitating informed decision-making and targeted interventions.

The said program is part of the Sama-sama Inisyatiba para sa Kalusugan ng Taong Bayan sa Universal Health Care program (Sikat sa UHC), initiated by the Philippine NGO Council on Population, Health, and Welfare (PNGOC).

According to the PNGOC, Tabaco City was selected as the pioneer for the program due to having the most updated CBMS.

Nitish Kumar Venkatesan, one of the founders and team leader of Catalyst Management Services, said that the idea of the program stemmed from Tabaco City’s current systems in place. However, the challenge lies in the lack of integration with the data. 

“The CBMS here [in Tabaco City]  is very robust, and it is supported by an extremely strong IT infrastructure…the only challenge [was that] when it comes to visualization, it goes more on tables and numbers, so we have created a dashboard. The entire CBMS data has been broken down into various sections starting with demography, education, occupation, and so on,” Venkatesan said. 

The enhanced CBMS dashboard offers customizable features tailored to user needs, allows the user to validate the data, and helps bring multiple departments and stakeholders together in one place.

“What would be the key requirement is somebody or some team to constantly monitor this, which will make it far more powerful and useful because suddenly you will see a spike somewhere or go up somewhere they can quickly pick up and analyze,” Venkatesan said. 

Venkatesan ensured the project protected private data, allowing customization of the dashboard to display only public information.

Niq Maravillas, Sikat project manager, noted the program’s potential to improve job efficiency.

“This would be helpful for us because, for example, the data on teenage pregnancy was actually integrated just yesterday…if we have those data, I could help you when it comes to the evidence based on more updated data,” said Maravillas.

Chi Vallido, Executive Director of PNGOC, expressed optimism about Tabaco City’s leadership and anticipated that other districts would also adopt the enhanced program due to its advantages in monitoring public health-concerns and climate change.

Meanwhile, Tabaco City Mayor Krisel Luistro led the program’s launch, emphasizing its potential to benefit the community and empower the local government through streamlined data management and analysis. | Melojane Guiriñan

Photo: Krisel Lagman