34 peo­ple die from HIV/AIDS this year

Cebu Daily News - - NEWS - /COR­RE­SPON­DENT FUTCH AN­THONY INSO

AROUND 34 in­di­vid­u­als have al­ready died af­ter be­ing in­fected with Hu­man Im­mun­od­e­fi­ciency Virus-Ac­quired Im­mun­od­e­fi­ciency Syn­drome (HIV-AIDS) in Cen­tral Visayas this year.

Ac­cord­ing to the De­part­ment of Health (DOH7) Re­gional Epi­demi­ol­ogy and Sur­veil­lance Unit (RESU), 747 cases of HIV/AIDS were al­ready re­ported to them from Jan­uary to Septem­ber this year.

Fran­cis Irvin Bar­ing, Nurse III of DOH-7, told re­porters that in the month of Septem­ber alone, the re­gion has recorded 91 new cases of HIV/AIDS.

“Ev­ery day, 32 cases of HIV/AIDS were re­ported to us in Luzon, Visayas and Min­danao. As of Septem­ber 2018, we al­ready have 60,207 cases na­tion­wide,” Bar­ing said, adding that Cen­tral Visayas ranks fourth among the re­gions in the coun­try with high­est cases of HIV/AIDS.

The Na­tional Cap­i­tal Re­gion has the high­est cases of HIV/AIDS in the coun­try, fol­lowed by Re­gions 4A and 3.

From 1984 up to present, Cen­tral Visayas has al­ready recorded 5,356 cases of HIV/AIDS, wherein 91 per­cent or 4,913 cases come from Cebu prov­ince.

“It’s alarm­ing be­cause this is not only an epi­demic but pan­demic also and we are hop­ing that the pub­lic will be­come aware of this,” he added.

“79 per­cent of to­tal cases (na­tion­wide) are due to sex­ual ac­tiv­i­ties or con­dom-less sex. HIV cases also in­crease due to new in­fec­tions be­cause the pub­lic is now aware of the free and con­fi­den­tial HIV test­ing,” he said.

Aside from their usual in­for­ma­tion, ed­u­ca­tion and com­mu­ni­ca­tion (IEC) cam­paign in pre­vent­ing the dis­ease, Bar­ing said they are now co­or­di­nat­ing with the De­part­ment of La­bor and Em­ploy­ment (DOLE-7) in re­quir­ing Busi­ness Process Out­sourc­ing (BPO) com­pa­nies to in­clude HIV test­ing of their em­ploy­ees be­fore hir­ing them.

“We are part­ner­ing with DOLE in terms of op­er­a­tion of com­pa­nies to re­quire them on the TB (Tu­ber­cu­lo­sis), HIV, Hep­ati­tis and drug aware­ness cam­paign be­fore op­er­a­tion. 80 per­cent of the BPOs were al­ready cov­ered on this cam­paign,” Bar­ing added.

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