Call for Proposals: AHEAD-HPSR Program

The Philippine Council for Health Research and Development and the Department of Health is inviting you to the Call for Proposals for 2021 and 2022 AHEAD-HPSR research priorities.

Priority topics for 2021 are as follows:

1. Evaluation of the National Objectives for Health 2017 – 2022
2. Evidence Review of COVID-19 Health Technology Topics

Priority research topics for 2022 can be accessed thru

Interested individuals preferably with institutional affiliations that are DOST accredited as science foundation are welcome to apply. You may submit the following initial requirements to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.:

  1. Capsule proposal (maximum of 5 pages)
  2. Letter of Intent
  3. Workplan Schedule (Gantt Chart of Activities)
  4. Curriculum Vitae of lead proponent (Principal Investigator/Project Leader)
  5. Profile of the institution
  6. Endorsement of agency head

Deadline of submission of proposals is February 25, 2021. For queries, please contact Mr. Pio Justin Asuncion at (02) 651-7800 local 1326/1328 or email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

The Department of Science and Technology – Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (PCHRD), the University of Trieste (UNITS) and Fondazione Italiana Fegato (FIF) entered into an Agreement to develop and implement a program focused on molecular hepatology within the PhD Program in Molecular Biomedicine of UNITS. This Fellowship program integrates basic research and clinics focusing on the study of molecular approaches to cancer biology, genetics, jaundice and metabolic diseases. The duration of the program is for 3 years.
Applicant’s research interests must be aligned with the National Unified Health Research Agenda (NUHRA) and National Harmonized Research and Development Agenda.
The PhD program aims to achieve the following objectives:
  1. Develop a pool of high-quality human resources in molecular hepatology in particular who will contribute to the country’s global competitiveness and economic development;
  2. Provide opportunities to deserving students to study and obtain PhD degrees in Molecular Biomedicine in reputable institutions abroad;
  3. Contribute to the country’s health research and technological innovation capabilities through training on biomedical research;
  4. Create the basis for a Filipino Liver Network integrating basic and clinical research in liaison with FIF.
Two positions of PhD students will be available each year at UNITS (Subject to the availability of funds)
The applicant must:
  1. Be a Filipino citizen;
  2. Be in good health condition;
  3. Not be more than 40 years old at the time of application;
  4. Hold a Master's degree in a field relevant to health and biomedicine;
  5. Have an outstanding academic record;
  6. Passed the admission requirements for the PhD study;
  7. Passed the interview and other screening procedures;
  8. Conduct her/his research for the entire duration of the scholarship and of the PhD Program.
Scholarship Privileges
  1. Living allowance (20,000€/year);
  2. Book allowance (500€/year);
  3. Bench fee (4,000€/year);
  4. Health and accident insurance; and
  5. One round-trip economy fare from residence to Italy.
Selection Procedure
1st SelectionDocument Screening Documentary evaluation of the form and other requirements by DOST-PCHRD
2nd SelectionTechnical Interview Technical interview by a panel composed of DOST-PCHRD Director, FIF Scientific Director (or a FIF delegate), or a member of the PhD Program in Molecular Biomedicine of the UNITS, and other health research experts to assess:·       Academic background and learning ability·       Capacity for completing the study·       Possibility of contributing to the development of the country·       Compatibility to the university courseThe interview will take place online.
3rd and Final Selection A panel from the PhD Program in Molecular Biomedicine (UNITS) will identify the successful PhD student(s) from among the candidates selected in the Technical Interview, based on their academic records and the selection criteria as established by UNITS.
List of Application Documents (Forms) for PCHRD screening

Please submit the following documents: 

  1. CV
  2. Accomplished application form with ID picture
  3. Endorsement Letter from two (2) former professors in MS program
  4. Certificate of Employment (if employed, recommendation and permission to take a leave of absence from employer or head of agency while on scholarship)
  5. Certificate of Master Degree
  6. Transcript of Records (certified true copy)
  7. Accomplished re-entry action plan form (narrative)
Applicant/s who were able to pass the 1st and 2nd round of selection will be asked to submit the following:
  1. PSA Birth Certificate (Photocopy)
  2. Valid NBI Clearance (Original)
  3. Medical Certificate as to health status from a licensed physician with his/her PRC license number indicated
Applicant/s who will be accepted in the program will be asked to submit the following before departure to Italy: 
  1. Admission to Graduate Studies/Graduate School
  2. Program of Study/Course Curriculum (if available or to follow)
  3. Budgetary Requirements (attach at least 3 airfare and health and accident insurance canvasses and website references for items requested)

*Interested applicants may send their CV to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. as initial expression of interest and send the requirements afterwards. 

Documents must be submitted to:
For advance copy of documents, email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
For hard copy of documents, send to:
Dr. Jaime C. Montoya
Executive Director III, DOST-PCHRD
Saliksik Building, DOST Compound, Gen. Santos Ave., Bicutan Taguig City 1631 Philippines

2021 Timeline
February 1 Opening of the PCHRD Call for Applications
April 30 Application deadline
May Document Screening and Interview
June 15 Announcement of the selected candidate(s)
July - September Preparation of necessary documents (visa, insurance, bank account,etc.) and Signing of scholarship agreement
October Orientation of Scholars and Departure
November 1 Start of PhD program

For inquiries, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


What is PCHRD's Startup Research Grant Program?

Under Republic Act No. 11337 or the Innovative Startup Act, the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) has been identified as one of the key government agencies tasked to support research and development (R&D) activities of Filipino-owned startups and promote the startup ecosystem within the country. RA 11337 also authorizes the establishment of a Startup Grant Fund (SGF) under DOST which will be used to fund R&D activities of eligible startups that are aimed at improving their core technology, enhancing the product’s market potential, and refining their existing products, processes, or services.

The Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (PCHRD), one of the sectoral planning councils of DOST, greatly recognizes the importance of R&D in addressing the health issues of the country. In support to the operationalization of RA 11337, PCHRD created a Startup Research Grant Program under DOST SGF that aims to support research activities of startups in the health sector.

Objectives of the Program:

The PCHRD Startup Research Grant Program will provide financial support to qualified startups to conduct research activities aimed at:

  1. Overcoming R&D roadblocks;
  2. Strengthening intellectual property (IP);
  3. Establishing initial market traction;
  4. Refining business model; and/or
  5. Scaling up production.

Benefits to Startups:

Recipients of research grants under this program are entitled to receive the following benefits:

  • Access to the DOST/Council’s GIA Program
  • Access to follow-up financial assistance for scale-up and expansion offered by other DOST offices and agencies
  • Access to the science and technology network of the DOST and the Philippine National Health Research System
  • Access to DOST Testing Laboratories and Research Facilities
  • Access to the DOST Technology Business Incubator (TBI) Network

Call Scope

Research proposals must be drafted based on any of the following research areas:

  1. Innovative Tools for Improved Health Care Provider-Patient Experience
    • Systems/tools that will improve health care provider-patient experience (e.g. appointment systems, specialist search, resource mapping/tracking, homecare monitoring, etc.)
  2. Systems for Health Service Delivery
    • Efficient and inclusive health service delivery systems such as online referral systems, ePharmacy, teleconsultations, etc.
  3. Innovative Technologies for Health Care Facilities
    • Technologies for health facilities, such as biomedical devices, diagnostic kits, supply chain management, smart and resilient health facilities, etc.

Fund Tracks

Interested applicants may submit research proposals under any of the following funding tracks:

1. Proof-of-concept to Product (POC2P Track)
  • Generation of marketable and validated products/services
2. Product to Market (P2M Track)
  • Validation of business model
  • Incubation
  • Mentoring
  • Business support program
  • Capacity building
  • Fabrication support
  • Marketing and market validation
  • Optimization of processes
  • Acquisition of production capacities
  • Optimization of value chains
  • Legal and expert support
  • Use of facilities
  • Scale up optimization
  • Roll out
  • Expansion of protection to other countries

Eligibility Requirements

To avail of the grant, a startup must have the following qualifications:

  1. Must be registered with SEC
  2. Must be a startup company with one or multiple products and/or service related to health 
  3. Must be Filipino-owned (at least 60% of the company is Filipino-owned)
  4. Must be in operation for a minimum of 1 year and a maximum of 3 years
  5. Project leader must be Filipino
  6. Must show capability to conduct R&D
  7. Has legal personality to issue receipt
  8. Does not have any outstanding accountabilities with DOST
  9. Has no ongoing project with DOST
  10. Has no pending administrative or criminal cases

Application Mechanics and Documentary Requirements

Here is how to apply:

1. Prepare a capsule proposal (download template here) in PDF format containing the following information and required attachments:
  • Project title
  • Proposed project duration (maximum of 1 year)
  • Name of project leader
  • Company name, address and contact details
  • Cooperating agencies (if any)
  • Project plan (statement of the problem, objectives, description of proposed research activity, methodology, target accomplishments and expected outputs, significance/impact, discussion on regulatory barriers and plan to overcome the same)
  • Regulatory barriers and plans to overcome the same

Required attachments:
    • Budgetary requirements (capped at PhP 3M) (download template here)
    • Background of the startup
      • Year established
      • Current level of funding round
      • Products/services offered with corresponding descriptions
      • R&D activities conducted on current products
      • Team composition
      • Business model
      • Competitive advantage
    • Proofs of eligibility
      • Authenticated copies of SEC-registered Articles of Incorporation and the latest General Information Sheet for stock and non-stock corporations like NGOs, foundations, cooperatives or associations; or authenticated copy of SEC-registered Articles of Partnership for partnerships;
      • Authenticated copies of Business Permits and Licenses;
      • Latest copies of Income Tax Returns, Audited Financial Statements, and other financial reports;
      • Proof of capability and track record in conducting R&D, and when applicable, endorsement from the business incubation facility where the startup is located.

  • Disclosure of other businesses (if any)
  • CV of project leader
  • Company profile

2. The capsule proposal and required attachments should be submitted for feedback and evaluation until March 8, 2021 via email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

3. All interested applicants may attend the online proposal writeshop scheduled on March 8, 2021 in preparation for the drafting of full-blown proposals. This writeshop is open to all health startups that are registered at SEC. Registration links as well as updates on the writeshop will be posted on our social media accounts ( and

4. Full-blown proposals should be submitted/uploaded to the DPMIS portal ( by March 19, 2021. The full-blown proposal shall include the following:
  • Title of the proposed project
  • Duration of the proposed project
  • Description of the startup and the founders
  • Description of the product and value proposition
  • Background of the startup and the development of the technology (evolution of the startup, first prototype, first test, first sale)
  • Description of the target market and size
  • Competitive advantage analysis using a comparative advantage table
  • IP status and protection
  • Objective and scope of the proposed research
  • Methodology and expected outputs
  • Work plan or Gantt Chart of activities
  • Curriculum vitae of the project leader
  • Line-Item-Budget with 20% counterpart funding
  • Sworn Affidavits from all of the startup owners/ incorporators/ stockholders/ organizers/ partners, directors and/ or officers that they are not agents of or related by consanguinity or affinity up to the fourth civil degree to any DOST officer authorized to process and/or approve the grant and release of funds

Grant guidelines

The following guidelines shall be observed:

  • Interested applicants are only allowed to submit one (1) proposal at a time. Likewise, grantees are only allowed to implement one (1) project at a time.
  • Approved R&D activities must be implemented for a maximum period of 12 months. Grant per project is capped at PhP 3M.
  • DOST-supported and non-DOST-supported startups may apply.
  • All required project reports shall be submitted using applicable DOST Forms. The DOST Startup Grant guidelines for project implementation and monitoring will be followed.
  • PCHRD shall monitor status of startup grantees even after project termination. Startup grantees shall likewise accommodate PCHRD’s request for update

Dates to Remember

March 8, 2021 Deadline of submission of capsule proposals
March 8, 2021 Online writeshop for preparation of full-blown proposals
March 19, 2021 Deadline of submission of full-blown proposals
March 30, 2021 Last day of second round of external technical panel evaluation
April 5, 2021 Announcement of the list of official startup grantees


I have a product idea but I am still building a working prototype. Can I apply for a grant under this program?

  • NO, R&D activities for proof-of-concepts (POCs) will not be funded. You must at least have an ugly but working prototype to qualify for funding assistance under the program.

Can I request for funding assistance above PhP 3M?

  • YES, funding requests above PhP 3M may still be approved subject to PCHRD’s evaluation. Additional documentary requirements (i.e. financial viability doc, financial projections, manufacturing plan, value engineering, IP protection) may be requested by PCHRD as bases for approval of such request.

Do I have to use the DOST LIB form for the capsule proposal?

  • NO, you may only submit to us a list of all required expenses as an attachment to your capsule proposal. You may list all these required expenses in our prescribed budgetary requirement form (download here). We will assist you in preparing an LIB using prescribed DOST form during the writeshop.

Are we allowed to request for extension?

  • YES, subject to PCHRD’s evaluation and provided that the reason for extension is justified and acceptable.

Our startup has been in operation for more than a year but we are still in the process of applying for registration (SEC). Are we eligible to apply for a grant?

  • NO, a startup must be in operation for at least 1 year starting from the date of registration to be eligible.

The Department of Science and Technology – Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (DOST-PCHRD) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the University of the Philippines Manila (UPM) and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) to promote and facilitate the development of scientific and technological cooperation in health between the Philippines and UK in a virtual ceremonial signing last 5 January 2021.

Under the MOU, DOST-PCHRD, LSHTM and UP Manila will work together on various S&T collaborations focused on research priority areas including genomics, modelling, diagnostics, clinical trials, epidemiology and immunology. The partnership will also encourage the establishment of scientific and technological contacts among relevant organizations, research groups, colleges and universities, and firms in both LSHTM and UPM.

During the virtual ceremonial signing, British Ambassador Daniel Pruce congratulated the PCHRD, UPM and LSHTM for this milestone and recognized the importance of S&T in health in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set by the United Nations and its contribution in fighting the ongoing pandemic.  Department of Foreign Affairs – Office of European Affairs Assistant Secretary Jaime Victor Ledda likewise commend the undertaking and thanked the British government for being a committed partner in the areas of education and STI.

In attendance to witness the MOU signing were Philippine Ambassador to the UK Ms. Arlene Gonzales – Macaisa, LSHTM Professor Martin Hibberd, UPM Chancellor Dr. Carmencita Padilla, DOST Assistant Secretary for International Cooperation Dr. Leah Buendia, DOST-PCHRD Executive Director Dr. Jaime Montoya, and DOST-PCHRD Institutional Development Division (IDD) Chief Ms. Carina Rebulanan.

The Department of Science and Technology- Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (DOST-PCHRD) successfully wrapped up its activities for the National Science and Technology Week 2020 celebration. With the theme “Agham at Teknolohiya: Sandigan ng Kalusugan, Kaayusan, Kabuhayan, at Kinabukasan,” this year’s NSTW, held from 23-29 November 2020,  aimed to  showcase initiatives of the scientific community to help Filipinos adapt to the new normal.

For the first time in NSTW history, the DOST held the celebration virtually through webinars and a virtual exhibit to adhere to COVID-19 safety protocols. The virtual exhibit, divided into four clusters, namely Kalusugan, Kaayusan, Kabuhayan, and Kinabukasan focused on R&D results and outputs that impact various sectors in the society affected by COVID-19. 

As the country’s lead agency for health research initiatives, the DOST-PCHRD featured new normal necessities under the Kalusugan exhibit cluster. Some health technologies featured in the exhibit were locally-developed ventilators, the GENAMPLIFY™ COVID-19 test kit, studies on virgin coconut oil (VCO) as adjunctive treatment for COVID-19, and specimen collection booths, among others.

Through its NSTW flagship event held last 23 November 2020 entitled  “PagSIBOL sa Pandemya: Health R&D COVID-19 Initiatives,” the DOST-PCHRD presented its funded technologies in response to COVID-19 and their impacts to the country’s COVID-19 response efforts. These technologies are under the University of the Philippines Surgical Innovation and Biotechnology Laboratory (UP SIBOL) Program, particularly the development of the Sanipod, the UP SIBOL Personal Protective Equipment: Design and Development of Locally-Manufactured, Reusable, Powered, Air-Purifying Respirator (PAPR), and the CleanIntubate.

The Sanipod, a self-containing cubicle similar to air showers, was developed to allow minimal contact sanitation of healthcare workers as they exit patient wards. Similarly, the CleanIntubate is a portable device that lessens frontliners’ handling of highly infectious equipment. It automatically cleanses, disinfects, washes and dries laryngoscopes which are used for intubationーa procedure done on patients with severe or critical pneumonia, resulting in respiratory compromise. The PAPR project, on the other hand, aims to develop additional personal protective equipment that meets the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health standards. The technology can be used for COVID-19 high-risk procedures such as intubation, endoscopies, sample collection and testing, among others. 

To close this year’s virtual NSTW celebration, the DOST-PCHRD held the second day of the “Writeshop: Capacity Building in Technical Writing for Mental Health Research Proposal Development” last 5 December 2020. Led by the Mental Health- Technical Working Group (MH-TWG), the Writeshop was a 2-day capacity building effort aimed to equip health researchers with skills in developing technically sound mental health research proposals. 

Five project teams participated in the writeshop facilitated by research methods experts and mental health experts from the MH-TWG. As the culminating activity for the writeshop, the project teams presented their outputs to the Department of Science and Technology represented by Undersecretary Rowena Cristina Guevara, Department of Health represented by Ms. Frances Prescilla Cuevas, and the Philippine Council for Mental Health represented by Dr. Leonor Cabral-Lim.

From October to November, a total of 1,772 online attendees joined the DOST-PCHRD activities under the NSTW 2020 celebration. To watch replays of the webinars organized by the DOST-PCHRD, visit