InterAksyon recently reported that the Philippine Department of Health’s HIV and AIDS Registry released November 2013’s new HIV case count, which was 35 percent higher than November 2012’s number and also brought the total for 2013 cases close to 5,000. The department reported 384 new HIV diagnoses in November 2013, compared with 284 from the previous year.
The department attributed all but five cases to sexual contact, with the vast majority—83 percent—attributed to men who have sex with men. Sixty-three percent of new infections were in adults ages 20–29. Injecting drug users sharing infected needles accounted for the additional five cases.
Of the 4,456 cases reported thus far in 2013, 1,250 infections were in youth ages 15–24 and three infections were in children under 15 years old. To date, 307 cases have progressed to AIDS.
The total number of Philippine HIV cases reported since 1984 has reached 16,158, with 861 deaths. Four percent were infected from needle sharing, 20 percent from blood transfusions, 3 percent from needle stick accidents, and 93 percent through sexual contact. Close to half of all cases were reported in the National Capital Region in and around Manila.