Members of local Acquire Immuno Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) council commemorates the victims of the disease during the Philippine International AIDS Candlelight Memorial 2019. (Photo courtesy of PSFI fb page)

The Puerto Princesa City AIDS Council (PPCAC) led the Philippines International Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) Candlelight Memorial on Tuesday night.

The campaign aims to intensify the fight for the health and rights of those infected and to remember the loved ones who died because of the life-threatening disease.

Marvi Trudeau, Executive Director of the Pilipinas Shell Foundation Incorporated (PSFI), said that the event should be a reminder to make people aware that AIDS is a serious disease that can kill anyone.

“It is a commemoration sa lahat ng nasawi, people who died because of AIDS. The way to do it is to remind people na sa dami na nang namatay, we should work together para maiwasan na mas madagdagan pa ang mga mabibiktima,” Trudeau said.

Records show that human immunodeficiency virus and acquired immune deficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS) continue to spread, making the fight “more challenging.”

Rocords show Palawan having a total of 345 HIV cases—a sexually-transmitted disease that breaks down the immune system that lead to AIDS if not treated.

The most serious stage of HIV may lead to death, she said.

“Unfortunately, the Philippines is one of the countries with the highest rate in the whole of Asia,” Trudeau added.

She appealed to the local government units (LGUs) and the other agencies to work together to prevent the rise of AIDS cases.

“We encourage organizations and the LGUs to scale up what they can do. Intervention to stop the spread of HIV/AIDS ay kailangan para matigil na pagtaas ng kaso sa bansa,” she said.

The campaign against the spread of HIV/AIDS is a part of PSFI’s advocacy to promote awareness not only in Puerto Princesa City but throughout Palawan.