TACLOBAN CITY- The Department of Health (DOH) issued an appeal to those individuals who are risk of possibly acquiring the HIV-AIDS (humanimmuno virus-acquired immune deficiency syndrome) which remains without absolute cure at this time.
According to Health Undersecretary Vicente Belizario, pre-screening centers are now available for them wherein they could have check themselves whether they are now showing or suffering from the ailment.
Among those considered to be high risk of getting the disease are those engaging in multiple sex partners, mostly men having sex with other men and drug users using injections.
The health official said that those who will avail the pre-screening service are assured that they would remain unknown.
“They have to come out in the open and we are giving them an assurance that we will keep (the information) confidential; that the confidentially rule will be observed,” Belizario said during a press conference on Tuesday.
In Eastern Visayas, since the government through the DOH started tracking the disease in 1984, there were 220 known cases of HIV-AIDS.
Last year, the DOH reported of 58 new cases and for the first quarter of the year, 23 new cases were monitored by said department.
Local health officials also confirmed that a man from one of the provinces in the region died due to AIDS. Identities of the victims are prohibited to be disclosed under our laws.
Under Republic Act 8504, otherwise known as the Philippine National AIDS Council, mandatory testing is now allowed though being encouraged.
Health officials want this be amended as they are now discussing with members of Congress to make HIV-AIDS testing mandatory, especially those in the high risk sectors.