CEBU CITY, Philippines — Cebu City Councilor Rey Gealon has expressed concern over the increasing number of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) cases in the city.
Quoting a national report, Gealon said that Central Visayas has 8,407 newly diagnosed HIV cases as of May 2022.
Of the number, 4,993 (59 percent) are from Cebu City.
Central Visayas is among the regions of the country with the highest number of new HIV infections registered every year.
To help address the situation, Gealon has sent a letter to the office of the Cebu City Health Department (CCHD) officer-in-charge Dr. Daisy Villa.
Gealon asked Villa how his office could “effectively legislate” on matters within CCHD, especially on the increasing number of newly diagnosed individuals with HIV and AIDS.
The councilor also asked Villa for a detailed report as to the number of individuals, who had been newly diagnosed with HIV and AIDS as of November 2022, and a comparison of the numbers for the past two to three years.
“This representation would also like to inquire as to what legislative measures I can undertake to aid your department,” read a portion of his letter.
The World Health Organization defines HIV as an infection that targets the immune system and weakens people’s defense against many infections “and some types of cancer that people with healthy immune systems can more easily fight off.”