Birth Defect In The Philippines

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2.1.1. Introduction to Birth Defect Birth defect is one of the significant indicators of health status of every individual. The incidence of birth defects remains an important public health concern. Inadequate knowledge about the defects among prospective mothers (or the family) could result in delayed medical managements. It is also under-recognized cause of infant’s and children’s death and disability. The World Health Organization (WHO) defined birth defect as structural or functional abnormalities that are usually seen at birth. It is reported that children who survive and live with birth defect are faced with the increased risk of developing life-long physical, cognitive and social challenges on which medical intervention and other supportive…show more content…
Ethnocultural Health Beliefs of Filipino Traditional Filipino relate concept of illness as being a humoral imbalances between hot and cold in the body or as a consequences of natural events like cold drafts, thunder, lightning or typhoon. They relate illness as divine retribution for sins of omission or commission or as punishment by the evil spirit for wrongful deeds, as well. The concept of Filipino regarding health is based on the principle of balance - (timbang). An excess intake of any type of food is perceived to be the cause of specific disorders (Dixon,…show more content…
The result of their study showed that African American and Hispanics believed that alcohol, drugs, or chemicals never cause birth defects (with a mean of 2.95 and 2.36 to each ethnic group respectively). For the Caucasians, they relate birth defects more on the use or exposure to drugs or alcohol while pregnant, breathing or in contact with chemicals, and inheriting chromosomes from parents. For the African American women, behavior during the pregnancy period will greatly affect occurrence of birth defects. They believe that birth defects happen if during pregnancy, the pregnant woman worry about loved one with a disorder, eats the wrong food, watches horror movies, looks at animals, think bad thoughts, worry or felt scared, or, exposed to lunar eclipse. Furthermore, they relate birth defects on casting an evil eye or a spell to a pregnant woman, or god is punishing the parents for the sins they committed. Also, movement of wind or cold air through the pregnant woman’s body, disharmony of the fetus, and handling scissors during pregnancy are other health beliefs they also relate. However, the study showed that African Americans and Hispanics both agree that intercourse during pregnancy is attributed to birth defects, as well (Cohen,

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