The Department of Health (DOH) reminded people living with HIV (PLHIV) to continue accessing free treatment and other related-services.
Health Secretary Francisco Duque III made the statement during the observance of the International AIDS Candlelight Memorial Day on Sunday, May 16.
“HIV is not a death sentence. With access to the right information and life-saving treatment, HIV can be managed and those afflicted with the disease can lead happy, healthy, and normal lives. To our PLHIV, help is always available,” he said.
The DOH has committed that the HIV services will remain unhampered despite the coronavirus pandemic.
“We urge you to access our free services and we assure you that support will continue even amid the COVID-19 pandemic. You do not have to go through this alone; do not hesitate to contact your health care providers for any concern, especially in these trying times,” said Duque.
“We reaffirm our commitment to ensure continuous access to HIV services and strengthen our efforts to control and eventually reverse the HIV epidemic,” he added.
The DOH also uged PLHIV to get vaccinated against COVID-19.
“As part of the priority group A3, DOH also encourages PLHIV to seek medical clearance prior to vaccination and get vaccinated once cleared by their attending physician,” it said.