Sexual health advocacy group Love Yourself Inc. will hold a one-day-only, free and confidential HIV testing service in 19 sites across the country tomorrow in celebration of the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) National Testing Day.
Seven centers will set up shop in the Visayas, three in Mindanao, four in Luzon, and five in Metro Manila from 11am to 7pm. Davao testing sites will be open from 1pm until midnight. (The public can get tested by registering online here.)
Love Yourself, Inc. had worked with 2015 Miss Universe Pia Wurtzbach two years ago in a campaign to get Filipinos to become more aware of HIV and AIDS.
This year, they’re partnering with the theater group Philippine Educational Theater Association for a project they’re calling “KYS (Know Your Status) and Play” with the help of the association’s actor ambassadors, including Gio Gahol, who stars in the upcoming play Under My Skin, which deals with issues surrounding about HIV and AIDS.
In October this year, a study from UNAIDS conducted between 2010 to 2018 found that the Philippines has the fastest-growing number of HIV cases worldwide, with the number of new infections growing by 203 percent annually. The numbers go against the broader worldwide trend, which has seen new HIV infections declining by at least 18 percent in most countries.
Earlier this year, the government enacted Republic Act 11166, or the Philippine HIV and AIDS Policy Act of 2018, which allowed minors to get tested for the virus without their parents’ consent, which supporters say could help lower the number of HIV cases in the country.
This article, Free and confidential HIV testing services available across the PH tomorrow, originally appeared on Coconuts, Asia's leading alternative media company. Want more Coconuts? Sign up for our newsletters!