CITING data from the Department of Health (DoH), a party-list congressman bared that four pregnant mothers in their 20s and 52 adolescents are among the 877 new HIV cases recorded last December.
“All the adolescents found to have been infected with HIV got it through sexual intercourse and two of them were in the 10 to 14 years age range. The four pregnant mothers with HIV are in the 22 to 25 age range,” said House Deputy Majority Leader and Kabayan party-list Rep. Ron P. Salo, Philippine HIV-AIDS Policy Act principal author.
Salo said the latest report is deeply disturbing, underscoring the need to enforce more prevention, education, and other forms of effective intervention by implementing the new law.
“Considering that the 108 patients who said they paid for or received payment for sex were aged 17 to 53 years, that means for those who are 10 to 16 years old, there was no money involved, so other factors like rape, sexual abuse, molestation or experimentation would have been present,” said Salo.
With the new HIV-AIDS law, he said teenagers aged 15 to below 18 can volunteer for HIV testing and do not need parental consent.
“Persons younger than 15 who are pregnant or engage in high-risk behavior making them open to infection can also choose to be tested but with the assistance of a licensed social worker or health worker,” said Salo.
“Thirteen of the 71 recorded HIV-AIDS deaths last December were in the 15 to 24 age range,” said Salo.