DILG calls for support in addressing HIV problem

Monday, September 05, 2011

DILG calls for support in addressing HIV problem

by Jerome Carlo R. Paunan

MANILA, Sept. 5 (PIA) -- A senior official of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) said the involvement of all stakeholders is crucial to effectively address the increasing cases of Human Immunodeficiency Virus or HIV infection.

"The government alone can not do it, hence, the need to have partners. We have to work extra hard and closer with the communities," Undersecretary for Local Government Austere Panadero said during the 5th Leadership Training entitled, "Commitment in Action: Addressing the HIV and AIDS at the Regional Level" recently.

He said that all sectors have to be actively involved to arrest the increasing HIV cases in the country.

As of July this year, the country’s health department has recorded 7,235 HIV cases and the numbers are feared to balloon in the next few years if no preventive actions or measures are taken up.

"It is a challenge on our part to intensify our information-dissemination campaign up to the grassroots level and reach out to vulnerable groups," he said, noting that HIV cases are high in Manila, Cebu, and Davao.

To reverse the trend or growing numbers of HIV cases in the country, he said that government’s efforts to make the public aware of the magnitude of the problem (HIV) have to be confined in all regions and that HIV projects should be implemented.

"The RAATs (Regional AIDS Assistance Teams), as the hope on the ground, should be in the forefront of government service delivery and have to accelerate things towards addressing the HIV, which has become a development issue," the Undersecretary said.

The Philippines is one of the 63 countries with HIV cases and among the seven countries with increasing HIV cases. There is one HIV case reported every four hours or a total of six cases daily.

The country has recorded ‘highs’ in terms of advocacy or creating public awareness of the HIV and AIDS and low as regards the prevention of the same owing to the high-risk behavior of the victims and their refusal to undergo treatment or check up.

"Let us keep the fire burning and sustain the momentum until we put to a stop to this problem (HIV)," Panadero told about 50 participants to the activity representing all regional and central offices of the DILG, DSWD and DOH--the agencies of the government composing the Regional AIDS Assistance Teams. (RJB/JCP-PIA NCR)

Cabatuan.com - Kasimanwa.com - Austere Panadero

Boracay, Aklan