BAGUIO CITY – Marking its 10th annual HIV/AIDS conference dubbed as “Moving Towards CHANGE . . . Towards a CLEAN ENTERTAINMENT V”, the city government here together with the Baguio AIDS Watch Council (AWAC), Reproductive Health and Wellness Center (RHWC), Baguio City HIV Surveillance Team and the Baguio Association of Bars and Entertainment Society (BABES) commemorated the Baguio World AIDS Day celebration last Dec. 3 at the Baguio Convention Center.
City Health Officer Dr. Rowena Galpo disclosed that starting 2011 to 2015, an average of nine (9) Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) cases every year have been served at the Health Services Office.
Based on the records of the HSO, most of the new HIV cases are MSM (men having sex with men).
“With this year’s theme “Getting to Zero . . . Zero New HIV Infection . . . Zero Discrimination and Zero AIDS Related Deaths,” ang kampanya laban sa AIDS ay katungkulan ng lahat – bata, matanda, gobyerno, pribadong sector, religious at tradisyonal institusyon,” said Galpo.
According to the World Health Organization and DOH Epidemiology Bureau, Philippines is one of the nine countries with alarming increase of HIV. Of the 651 cases, 60 had developed into full-blown AIDS and there were also 50 related deaths in October. A clear 21% leap over the same period last year.
In the recent report of the DOH, there is an alarming rising number of HIV cases in the country for the period January to October. A total of 6,552 individuals were diagnosed with HIV.
“To prevent HIV infections, we continue to advocate for the ABC prevention of HIV – abstinence for our young people, be faithful to your partners, and practice careful and responsible sex,” said Dr. Galpo.
The HSO is carrying out free testing and detection for HIV patients./Jho Arranz