MANILA, Philippines – Former Senator and Health Secretary Juan Flavier died on Thursday afternoon, October 30, Acting Health Secretary Janette Garin confirmed his death. He succumbed to multiple organ failure and sepsis brought about by pneumonia.
According to media report, he died at 4 pm at the National Kidney and Transplant Institute from complications from pneumonia. He was 79.
Flavier leaves behind an outstanding legacy in public health. He initiated stricter anti-tobacco measures, battled infectious diseases with an internationally acclaimed multi-vaccine national immunization program, and worked to provide all Filipinos greater public access to health facilities and services.
Flavier was a lifetime champion of reproductive health, although he was ambiguous about lobbying for a law – foreseeing it as a divisive exercise – and instead espoused a “just do it” mentality, believing that administrative orders and sheer political will could deliver the services and access that Filipinos needed.