Camiguin social hygiene clinic offers free HIV testing, treatment

CAMIGUIN, May 20 (PIA)--Targeting to save more lives from the deadly human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS), the Provincial Health Office (PHO) here urged residents to avail the free services and treatment from their Social Hygiene Clinic.

Camiguin HIV/AIDS
To further boost the HIV/AIDS advocacy, the Provincial Health Office (PHO) joins the country in the observance of the International AIDS Candlelight Memorial at Cong. PPR Tourism and Sports Complex. (FMR)

"Kailangan nato ma-reach ang tanan; kita nga naa'y mga risgo. Kung ikaw usa ka sexually active, kinahanglan gyud ta magpatest (We have to reach out to everybody especially those who are at risk. If you are sexually active, you really need the [HIV] test)," PHO Dr. Gretchen Cabalang said in a radio program, May 19.

For those who are hesitant or are afraid of the stigma, Rossel Socorro Malalay of the hygiene clinic said they could arrange a special test in a different venue through their hotline at 0977 061 0876.

Malalay added that they always ensure the confidentiality of the information as well as the person who will undergo the testing, screening or treatment.

For his part, Councilor Irvin Jubay Sabella, who also handles advocacy on HIV/AIDS, said aside from educating communities about the virus, they also try to win the community's support for the persons living with HIV (PLHIV) to eventually end the stigma or discrimination especially the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer or questioning (LGBTQ) community.

"Sa tanan nakong mga kauban sa LGBT, sa mga straight, kanang mga posible nga pwedeng matakdan sa HIV, wala'y laing way nga mahibaw-an kung ikaw na'y HIV. Magpascreen, magpatest kay dako kaayo ang tabang sa gobyerno para masumpayan ang imong kinabuhi," he said.

(To my fellow LGBT, to the heterosexual, to those who can possibly be infected with HIV, there is no other way to know if you have an HIV. Have yourself screened, tested because the government can help you live longer)

As of 2020, there are 26 sexually transmitted infection (STI) cases recorded in the province of which 22 are male and 4 are female. Cabalang added that about 36 percent of their total cases in 2019-2020 come from 15-19 age group.

"Makontrol na nato nga dili na mudaghan [ang HIV/AIDS]. Kung pwede lang i-delay ang pakighilawas. Kung dili malikayan, kinahanglan naa'y proteksyon," Cabalang said.

(We have the power to control the spread of HIV/AIDS. If possible [especially to the young people], delay sexual activities. If it can't be helped, please use protection)

To further boost the HIV/AIDS advocacy, PHO joins the country in the observance of the International AIDS Candlelight Memorial at Cong. PPR Tourism and Sports Complex. (RTP/PIA10)



Source: Philippines Information Agency (pia.gov.ph)

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