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Provincial Health heightens info campaign on HIV

| by: Fides Palicte

The Cebu provincial health office (PHO) continues to pursue its education and information campaign against HIV, a sexually transmitted disease.

According to PHO’s education and promotion Information officer II, Wilfredo Salgado Jr., this is a year round effort alongside advocacy for safe sex.

The activities involve counseling as a way of reaching out to vulnerable sectors, that include TB patients, pregnant women, drug users and members of the gay community.

Persons who may be suspected of having HIV are normally directed to the Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center where a drug that stops the HIV virus from replicating is available.

The pertinent anti-retro viral drug does not kill the HIV virus germs, Salgado emphasized.

The said drug also raises a person’s immune system, “di madali-dali ug ka sakit,” adds Salgado.

The government-owned hospital has a treatment hub for HIV at its cancer building.

Identities of persons coming in for testing are guaranteed protection and will be held in utmost secrecy.

When asked if the PHO has come across persons showing signs of HIV infection in one of their education campaigns in the municipalities here in Cebu, Salgado disclosed that the (PHO) has not authority to disclose such data at their level.

Salgado is for sustaining the fight against HIV and urging the high-risk population to seriously adopt safe sex.

Salgado and a team of counselors regularly conduct lectures in the towns.

He is happy that the townsfolk listen to their talk intently.

Last May 15, the PHO joined other health groups in a candlelight memorial for those with aids and those who have died of it.