Editorial: HIV-Aids awareness among males

IN HINTERLAND villages, only the womenfolk attend when the City Health Office conducts a free clinic for reproductive health.

In the city's voluntary ligation and vasectomy for marginalized families with more than four children, those who come forward to seek intervention are also women, very rarely do fathers ask to be fixed.

There must be something about sex and the organs that make males feel invincible if not exempted.

This could be the thread men are following as the scourge of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) continue to plague men having sex with men, despite repeated reports that it is the predominant mode of transmission in the fast and furious increase the past years.

Of the 38,114 HIV cases reported from January 1984 to October 2016, 76 percent or a total of 28,947 belong to the male-having-sex-with-male (MSM) category, thereby making it the predominant mode of transmission.

A total of 17,650 were acquired thru homosexual contacts, and 11,297 transmitted via bisexual contacts.

For the period of July to October 2016 alone, 2,597 acquired HIV through MSM, including 1,650 homosexual contact, and 947 bisexual contact.

Where do prostituted women come in?

Among the 331 new cases recorded for July to October 2016 acquired through transactional sex, the report of which did not even indicate how many of these were the prostituted women.

According to the HIV-Aids Registry of the Philippines (HARP) of the Department of Health (DOH), from July to October 2016, 108 of the new cases accept payment for sex, 168 paid for sex, and 55 are engaged in both.

Something needs to be done to heighten awareness on HIV-Aids among men, it cannot continue this way.

Since the HIV-Aids registry was set up in the 1980s, massive information dissemination campaigns have been done for women engaged in transactional sex, them being the immediate suspect when the affliction was first brought out to the public.

In the generations that follow, however, it seems that only the women have been taking heed as the men went on, unmindful of their ways.

To compose 76 percent of the people living with HIV-Aids in no joke. It's about time that men realize this and address their vulnerabilities including the wrong belief that they are immune to such disease because they do not pay or are paid for sex.
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