Gay sex tops causes of HIV spread

“WORST draft ever.”This was how retired judge Meinrado Paredes described the draft federal constitution that the House of Representatives passed on third and final reading on Tuesday, Dec. 11.This,

THE number of Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) cases in Central Visayas has risen from January to September this year due to increasing prevalence of male-to-male sex, an official of the Department of Health reported on Wednesday, Dec. 5.

In the first nine months of this year, around 356 people with HIV-Aids living in Central Visayas got the disease due to same-sex intercourse while 142 cases acquired it through sexual intercourse with both sexes, said Francis Irvin Baring, DOH 7 HIV-Aids program coordinator.

Only 133 cases got the disease through injecting drug use (IDU).

But IDU remains the prevalent mode of transmission of HIV-Aids in Central Visayas, with around 2,113 cases reported from 1984 to September this year, Baring said.

Only 1,579 cases were reported to have gotten the disease through male-to-male intercourse in the same period.

From 1984 to September this year, around 5,356 people from Central Visayas have been found positive of HIV-Aids.

Baring said that despite the still dismal numbers, Central Visayas’ ranking in terms of the most number of HIV-Aids cases nationwide has dropped from third last year to fourth this year.

But Baring said there is still no reason to be complacent as the number of HIV-Aids cases in the region remains significantly high.

As of September this year, around 34 people have died from HIV-Aids in Central Visayas.

From 1984 to September this year, a total of 153 people from the region have died from the disease.

Baring said that risky sexual behavior and the increasing number of cruising sites and bars in Cebu are just part of the many factors that contribute to the rise of HIV-Aids cases in the province.

The DOH 7 is also monitoring the continuing prevalence of HIV-Aids in injecting drug users especially those who got it through the use of Nubain, an injectable pain medication.

Baring said they are closely coordinating with the local police in identifying the sources of illegal Nubain in Cebu to hopefully, apprehend them.

Baring also urged the public to strengthen the practice of peer-to-peer education and to support the campaign against HIV-Aids, particularly against those who inject illegal drugs. (from HBL of SuperBalita Cebu/JKV)