‘HIV should be tackled in colleges’

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Discussing HIV cases among college students may help curb the spread of the disease among young people, an official of the Department of Health said on Monday.

Health Undersecretary Vicente Belizario Jr. said that incorporating HIV discussions in national service training program subjects would help since high-risk groups are composed of those aged from 15 to 24.

“Magandang pag-usapan ang HIV/AIDS sa NSTP because it’s a required course in college… Yung high-risk group natin ay hindi na saklaw ng high school. College na,” Belizario said during the HIV Partners Forum.

He also emphasized the importance of bringing up the topic in medical colleges to lessen the stigma in the younger generation.


Health Secretary Janette Loreto Garin said education on AIDS prevention should start in the younger generation.

“The schools bring a huge opportunity of a catchment population who will be there listening to us; to inculcate in the minds of the young so that they carry the information in the generation,” Garin said.

The human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) targets the immune system and weakens the defense systems against infections and some types of cancer.

The most advanced stage of HIV infection is acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS).

The DOH said 651 new HIV cases were reported in October this year, a 21 percent increase from the same period last year with 537 cases.

Nationwide, there are 6,552 HIV cases, with 40 percent of them in the National Capital Region.

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