Increase in HIV/AIDS cases in Oro alarming-A A +A
Wednesday, July 11, 2012
AT LEAST 69 persons in Northern Mindanao region were found positive of Human Immunodeficiency Virus/Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (HIV-AIDS), with Cagayan de Oro City (CDO) having the highest number of cases.
This was announced by Councilor Dante Pajo on Tuesday during a meeting with the AIDS assistance regional team.
Pajo said a significant increase of AIDS cases in CDO is very alarming.
“From 36 cases in May to 42 as of Tuesday and still counting, this is very alarming,” Pajo said.
He said another patient, a 29-year-old, died last month in a hospital in CDO.
Jun Galban, spokesperson of the Department of Health (DOH)-Northern Mindanao, said that even Camiguin province, which has zero cases before, has recorded six new cases of “reactive” patients. But he said they are still waiting for the final result of the samples and tests from Manila for confirmation.
Galban said Iligan City also recorded an increase of HIV patients, including Bukidnon province.
Meanwhile, age group of patients found to be HIV positive are reportedly getting younger as the city recorded the youngest HIV positive - a 21-year-old patient.
“Based on our records, patients come from different religious denominations and it only shows anybody can have it,” Mahinay said.
Alagad Mindanao is an alliance of non-government organizations, people’s organizations, institutions and individuals involved in sexually transmitted infections (STI), HIV and AIDS prevention, care and support to people living with HIV (PLHIV) in Mindanao.
The Philippines is listed by the Joint United Nations Program on HIV/AIDS (Unaids) as one of the seven countries with increasing infection rates in 2010.
In 2012, an estimated 27,840 cases of HIV/AIDS will be recorded in the Philippines and is still expected to climb to as high as 35,940 in 2015, according to Susan Gregorio, executive director of the government’s AIDS council.
Gregorio said infection rates are increasing particularly among homosexual men and are spreading outside highly-urbanized areas where the virus used to be concentrated.
Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on July 11, 2012.