Legarda, author of several laws and bills on health and nutrition, emphasized on the role of Nutritionist-Dietitians in achieving the Millennium Development Goals, specifically in reducing hunger and malnutrition, which are said to be the critical manifestations of most poverty.
“According to the United Nations, one in four children in the developing world are still underweight. Alarmingly, children in rural areas are nearly twice as likely to be underweight than those in urban areas. Our latest National Nutrition Survey in 2008 reveals that the proportion of children aged 0-5 years who were underweight significantly increased, from 24.6 percent in 2003 to 26.2 percent in 2008. It is evident that much remains to be done. If you choose to help address this challenge, you will be instrumental to changing the fate of the entire nation and generations,” she said.
Out of 896 candidates, 601 passed this year’s Nutritionist-Dietitian Licensure Examination given by the Board of Nutrition and Dietetics in Manila and Zamboanga last July 2012.
Legarda called for the oath takers’ support towards legislative efforts on health and nutrition, noting that legislation will be for naught if there is a lack of people to implement them dedicatedly, effectively, and efficiently.
“With your talent and expertise, I trust that you will be my partners in promoting solutions to the many challenges we face in public health and nutrition,” she remarked.
“Enthusiasm, burning passion, and compassion – these will get you through the road ahead. Wherever you will be, remember that you always have the chance and the choice to contribute to the well-being of our people. That journey begins today,” Legarda concluded.***