Republic Act 8423 or other wise known as Philippine Traditional Medicine Act of the Philippines have established the Government Owned Corporation known as Philippine Institute of Traditional Alternative Health Care that is now located on East Avenue Medical Center Compound, Matapang St., Brgy Central, Diliman, Quezon City.
One of its mandate as stated in the law is: To formulate a code of ethics and standards for the practice of traditional and alternative health care modalities for approval and adoption by the appropriate professional and government agencies;
and as of this moment, Philippines recognize these Traditional and Alternative Medicine modalities that been regulated by PITAHC, and they are the Acupuncture, Chiropractic, Hilot, Homeopathy, and Naturopathy.
Upon seeing this, we might think that these healing modalities are the priorities of PITAHC. Thus defining Hilot as Traditional Medicine would not be appropriate that is why some lawmakers in trying to revive the law which is the RA 8423 have defined Hilot under House Bill 9160 drafted by Congresswoman Dr. Angelina “Helen” D.L. Ta, MD; House Bill 10059 drafted by Congresswoman Rossana “Ria’ Vergara; Senate Bill 2127 as drafted by Senator Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr., and Senate Bill 1308 as drafted by Senator Emmanuel “Manny” D. Pacquiao.
On the said proposed laws under their definition of terms, they have defined Hilot as a modality under the Alternative Health Care Modalities which is defined as:
other forms of non-allopathic, occasionally non-indigenous or imported healing method’s, though not necessarily practiced for centuries nor handed down from one generation to another [. Some alternative health care modalities include], WHICH SHALL INCLUDE BUT NOT LIMITED TO, reflexology, ACUPUNCTURE, MASSAGE, acupressure, chiropractic, nutritional therapy, HILOT, NATUROPATHY, HOMEOPATHY/HOMOTOXICOLOGY, TUINA MASSAGE, OSTEOPATHY, ANTHROPOSOPHIC MEDICINE and other similar [methods] MODALITIES.Senate Bill 1308 by Senator Manny Pacquiao Section 1 definition of terms; Senate Bill 2127 by Senator Ramon “bong” Revilla Section 1 Definition of Terms; House Bill 10059 by Congresswoman Rossana “Ria” Vergara on section 2 Definition of Terms; and on House Bill 9160 by Dr. Helen Tan Section 2 Definition of Terms
All of these law makers have the same thoughts about Hilot and they considered it only as an Alternative Health Care Modalities. and this is where the problem comes from. Hilot was not well defined that even the Institute that should promote our very own Traditional Medicine in my own opinion even the institute is confused of what Hilot really is. Though Technical Education and Skills Development Authority have been teaching Hilot since 2008, but even them have failed to correctly define Hilot but what they have promoted is doing Massage which is a Filipinized version of Swedish Massage.
So having a code of ethics would help as stated in Pitahc Mandate in defining what hilot is really about. So i reach out to them and have given me the Kartilya ng Manghihilot or Code of conduct of Manghihilot as well as the Antipolo Declaration.
In this code of ethics as i read it and make lakay read it as well, it seems that we are reading a sacred scripture that was set on stones like the stone tablet of the commandment of God. On the Antipolo Declaration here we see that it is so much aligned in making a resolution;
On the 3rd code was written in Tagalog which is a summary of an event so this was titled as Hilot Declaration in Tugegaro;
Now with these, can we have a clear definition of Hilot? If I am new in the practice, can these code of ethics guide me through? I could not help myself to compare this code of ethics to other modalities such as in massage therapy, one example of this is what we could find at Associated Bodyworks and Massage Professionals that have stated their code of ethics in their website. So with this, we have drafted our Habi Code of Ethics for Manghihilot.
The purpose of Code of ethics is to inform the Hilot practitioners on how to conduct themselves. It reiterates the values and moral as the practitioners and receiver will understand the standards that we are accountable to uphold.
As manghihilot, we are Healthcare providers which our goals consist of prevention of premature death and disability, maintainance or improvement of life,maximization of personal growth and development, and preparation for a good death.
As manghihilot we are traditional medicine practitioners. Our practice is based on the knowledge of our ancestors in delivering healthcare in terms of prevention, diagnosis and elimination of physical and/or mental disorders.
As time passed by new knowledge has been added to our practice to make the Hilot Tradition be adaptable into modern times.
We acknowledge that every individual has the ability to heal themselves thus our role only is to help the individual to facilitate their own healing.
As manghihilot, we do not treat patient that has conditions that is beyond our understanding. We refer them to proper healthcare professionals as necessary.
As manghihilot, we are trained to treat Traditional Filipino Ailments known as Pilay, and our works only revolved in treating this illness.
Our limitation as manghihilot is bounded only to what we know, so in order to overcome this limitation we should be open for learning and face the modern challenges of life; as time evolves into modernity we will bring hilot all along that future generations may still benefit from it.
Change is the only constant thing in this world; and through changes we are being reformed so that we may adopt to the challenges of modern times.
As Manghihilot, we do not just treat patient that comes to us to deal with their complaints; we will verify their current condition by conducting an investigative procedures that we call as Tawas.
We recognize that the illness of man may come either as a Spiritual Illness or a Physical Illness. And sometimes Physical Illness comes as a manifestation of Spiritual Illness or the disturbance of the patients mind and emotion.
We recognize that illness manifest to the Physical body of a person through the emotion or sensation of the person which is usually pain or discomfort. And sometime the cause of this discomfort has no physical origin but only dwells in the mind. Since it dwells in the mind that affects the person emotion, we treat it by creating rituals to release the Psycho- Emotional discomfort of a person which we know as Spiritual Illness.
As manghihilot, we recognize each individual person as Unique and Special, so the treatment we provide will vary to each individual even that two individual are experiencing same conditions. We highly respect individual differences, so that each individual may experience a unique way of treatment coming from a Manghihilot.
As we adopts into the modern times we can integrate our practice of Hilot into the current conventional healthcare delivery system in prevention of illness and in promotion of optimum health and well being.
We do not forbid nor discredit the freewill of our patient in their choice of healthcare and limit it to either the conventional or taditional hilot but we can integrate it for the greater benefit of our patient in terms of caring for their health.
As manghihilot, we value the health of every individual who seeks for our help but we do not tolerate negligence on the part of the individual by making us come into their homes to be treated unless the individual is already bed ridden. Serious illness such as Chronic Diseases must be seen first by Medical professional and upon their recommendation and with proper consent then we can apply our treatment techniques upon requested.Hilot Academy of Binabaylan Code of Ethics for Manghihilot written by Apu Adman Aghama