IAS: Guidance note on the use of antiretrovirals for prevention in the context of universal access to treatment


NOTE: I am unable to post or add a file in the HASH facebook page. But this is a good reference material.((Not an original post, downloaded from the International AIDS Society page))

SOURCE:  https://www.iasociety.org/Nobody-Left-Behind

This Nobody-Left-Behind Guidance on ARV Universal Access (as attached) is for anyone who provides HIV testing, treatment, prevention and care services either in a traditional healthcare setting or within the community. It provides a concise signposting to other existing guidelines, frameworks and best practice guidance in order to assist healthcare providers counsel individual clients on HIV testing, treatment and prevention in a way that is supportive, respectful, equitable and non-discriminatory, and mindful of ethical, legal and operational issues.

Some direct quotes from the attached:

The 2013 WHO guidelines recommend the following:
Before people start ART, it is important to have a detailed discussion with them about their willingness and readiness to initiate ART, the ARV regimen, dosage and scheduling, the likely benefits and possible adverse effects and the required follow-up and monitoring visits…

Adherence interventions, such as text messaging, should clearly be provided as part of a total package of several interventions. Many individual level adherence interventions are indicated for reasons in addition to improving adherence to ART. For example, nutritional support, peer support, management of depression and substance use disorders and patient education are vital components of routine
health and HIV care

HIV healthcare providers should recognize and respect their duty to protect the confidentiality of their patientsand should only disclose highly personal information, such as HIV status, with the informed consent of the patient. Failure to maintain confidentiality may cause harm and is therefore in direct confrontation with the Hippocratic Oath provision to do no harm.

Mothers known to be infected with HIV (and whose infants are HIV uninfected or of unknown HIV status) should exclusively breastfeed their infants for the first 6 months of life, introducing appropriate complementary foods thereafter, and continue breastfeeding for the first 12 months of life. Breastfeeding should then only stop once a nutritionally adequate and safe diet without breast-milk can be provided

If you are faced with an issue of dual-loyalty (if the law in your jurisdiction is in conflict with your ethical obligation to serve all patients fairly), it is important for all healthcare providers to prioritize their core obligation and their Hippocratic Oath.


***Do read the attached document, especially for our friends from other civil society organizations

For more information, HIV screening and Treatment and care support, please message us at https://www.facebook.com/HASHPilipinas/


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Year X


Been 10 years.

When we first jumped head first  into this relationship.

When people judged us for not understanding the no-sex relationship, and the set up we had around our relationship.

When I was diagnosed a month after and you stayed with me

For ten years-

I’d open my eyes in the morning knowing you’re there.

We’d attend family affairs together.

10 christmases. 10 new year’s eves. 

10 imperfect perfect years.

And a lifetime ahead.

With you.

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March – April 2017, HIV AIDS REGISTRY OF THE PHILIPPINES (late post)


While I am quite sure that the May, 2017 data will have come out in the next couple of days, it’s too late since I realized this after I did the table below =(

So here are the march – april data, sorry was busy the past two months.


Here’s a simple table I did 😉

  March 2017 April 2017 2017 Year to Date
New HIV Cases 968 629 3,290
AIDS Cases 108 84 376
AIDS Cases (% to new cases) 11.15% 13.35% 11.42%
Male 926 596 3,131
Male % cases 95.66% 94.75% 96.96%
Less Than 15 y/o 4 2 10
15-24 y/o 315 190 1,020
25-34 y/o 481 323 1,653
Pregnant WLHIV 4 6 21
Reported Deaths 27 17 172
NCR (Top 1 region) 234 (37%) 32% 1,160 (35%)
Region 4A (Top 2 region) 109 (14% ) 17% 524 (16%)
New ART Reported 754 561 2,471


Male to Male sex 560 343 1,814
Sex w/ Both Male & Female 184 260 770
Mother-to-Child 4 2 10
Sharing of Infected Ndles 4 18 75


Adolescents Cases (10-19) 45 / 968 33 / 629  
Less than 10 y/o 0 2  
OFW 59 51  
Accepted payment for sex 33M/2F 16M/1F 96M/9F
Paid for sex 46M/0F 23M/0F 155M/0F
Engaged in Both 14M/0F 8M/0F 49M/0F


  • More and more cities not considered under the global fund sites should act to increase HIV awareness and testing in their areas.
  • Most local AIDS councils need to activate – and reactivate.
  • More civil society organization should collaborate, we are not just talking about HIV CSOs and NGOs,  organizations working on poverty, on human rights, women and child care/welfare,  health care, the list goes on and on.

WE ARE ALL AFFECTED. If you’re thinking you’re immune from HIV, the effects go well beyond the virus entering your body.  Effects may reach your closest friends, family members, loved ones.

Talk to us on FACEBOOK  


Read and ask more about free community-based HIV screening 


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When you’re working with the community, does it mean that you are working at the Grassroots level?

I have heard so many stories around people claiming that they are actually working at the Grassroots but then again, they never really went down there, people would do research and would use years of experience to bring out probably the more brilliant ideas and proposals and projects but then again, they have never really been down there or maybe at least not recently.

People actually instruct or direct the community to do this and that but then again, they never really asked what the community wants to begin with– thinking that their suggestions are what’s best for the community.

It’s like, how can you actually be a trainer when you haven’t really practiced what you are supposed to train? Or manage a food Business Without Really learning and experiencing what the crew members are doing?

Of course, people can actually do in-depth research, both quantitative and qualitative, to come up with cerebral research materials but when they haven’t really immersed, I always feel the lack of soul in the research. It all seems like a bunch of words and numbers and figures and graphs. 

Without actual immersion, are we actually asking the right questions in a research?
The Grassroots is where the real struggles are and in the end, it’s where the answers are. We can always come up with the most intellectual theoretical Solutions but then again, the mind and the heart will have to meet somewhere for a proposed solution to be seamless.

I think (some of) the problems are:

  • that people tend to think that education and work experience adapt them into the Grassroots level, not taking into consideration that actual Grassroots experiences evolve and constant immersion is needed
  • That some people think they are more Superior than others that they forget all about the phrase, “nothing about us without us.”
  • That sometimes perceived commitment and passion to the advocacy leaves us Clueless with  what’s really going on down there

Yes, we all believe in evidence-based data and research as well as evidence-based proposals, but then again let us not forget that the Grassroots will always make an important part of that evidence.

ALWAYS go back to where it all started.

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Is age a factor in Accessing HIV screening?


I just got home from a late-night HIV screening, we had two activities last night. 1 for a clan of young men in their early twenties and the other one, in a blue bar where most men are in their late twenties or thirties

My thoughts.

#cbs #communitybasedHIVscreening

“…Tonight, we had two Screening activities, one for a clan in taytay vs a blue bar in Morato
Seems it’s easier to encourage people in their late 20s-30s to take an hiv screening compared to those in their early 20s… Or even listen to basic hiv info.
Peer pressure?
Lack of maturity?


Of course, there’s the AIDS law that says that people below 18 should have prior parental consent before they can access HIV testing.

Is this why the 15-24yo incidence goin’ up? Late test? Lack of awareness? Refusal to get info? 

The AIDS medium-term plan and the Philippine Health sector plan are both focusing highly on the youth or the young key population (YKP).  Judging from what happened tonight, I think it’s only proper that we give more effort towards educating the youth and come up with plans to penetrate the young population and give them the correct information that they need to increase HIV awareness and prevent HIV infection.

Men who have sex with men are as it is, very hard to reach and the young key population who are in fact MSM, are even harder to reach.

So yes, the national youth commission is taking the right leap to reach the YKPs, unfortunately efforts toward increasing the reach through community-based HIV screening among the youth was recently (allegedly) gunned down when UNICEF found out that the training cost was too high for them to handle. So we are back to doing what we have been doing the past years, less trained Young population members will be trying to reach out to their peers. We will be heavily dependent on people in their twenties reaching out to our teenagers. 

Oh well.

Kudos to efforts around including HIV education (textbook/reference materials) in the High School curriculum that started in Quezon City, I can just hope that this will be rolled out across the country very soon.

Let’s hope for the best.

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Missing In Action: The Research


It’s out, thanks to the twitter and FB pozzies who shared their stories 😘😘😘

As for me my greatest take away from this project was that I was able to hear and listen to the stories of different people living with HIV. It was an emotional roller coaster going through all the interviews and then going through all of them again while doing the transcriptions, translations and editing.

“The aim of this study, conducted by Jan W. de Lind van Wijngaarden (Burapha University, Thailand) and Andrew Ching (HIV & AIDS Support House) was to document why significant numbers of men who have sex with men based in Metropolitan Manila (also known as Greater Manila, Metro Manila and Manila) currently do not access HIV services at different levels of the HIV treatment cascade. The study was carried out with support from UNDP’s Bangkok Regional Hub through the ISEAN/HIVOS Multi-country Global Fund HIV programme. 

Missing in Action: Loss of clients from HIV testing, treatment, care and support services:

You can download the report here:

Special Thanks to friends from Positibong Pamilya, The Love Project, HIV Awareness Campaign Group, REDx 

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Community-based HIV screening (CBS)


This is the first time that I am writing about community-based HIV screening.

December 2014

UNAIDS had its first support for the orientation on community-based HIV testing where speakers from China and Cambodia came over to talk about their experiences on community-based testing, they showed data on increased HIV test uptake after the implementation of community-based testing.

In 2015, UNAIDS supported the writing of the operating guidelines and the different manuals around community-based testing which included the training manual so we can eventually roll out the said program in the Philippines.

In 2016, around July, with support from Save the Children and Global fund, we started training community members from the national capital region, Cebu and Davao so we can pilot run the Project and see the acceptability and feasibility of the program in the Philippines.

We are currently doing the evaluation of the said project.

There had been so much issues around the project,  things like laymen cannot do screening at the community level and issues around the quality of counseling at the community once screening’s done.

But what do we really want?

Our local government units have had clinics offering free HIV testing over the past few years and community-based HIV screening is there to complement their efforts by reaching people who refuse to go to the clinic for testing.

We want to reach more people, we want to test more people and as we test people, we want to link more people to care

Yes that’s the essence of community-based HIV screening we simply want to reach people who don’t want to go to the clinics for testing we simply want to bring the HIV screening down to the community

In the 2016 International AIDS Society conference in Durban in South Africa, community-based screening (CBS) was one of the many programs presented and it has shown tremendous impact in various countries alongside other projects like pre-exposure prophylaxis and self testing

The 2017 NCR 5-month data so far has shown that out of all screened at the community level 17% remains to be the reactivity or positivity rate of the project, this is way above the less than 5% National reactivity rate of the government. We are in fact reaching the right target. 

So yes, we can do screening at the community level and yes, we are able to reach people who haven’t been tested ever in their entire lives.

And ultimately, we are able to link people to proper treatment proper care and proper support.  

This is not about people doing the screening this is about reaching people at the community level so we can have them screen for HIV this is about the clients

So ladies and gentlemen, that is what CBS or community-based HIV screening is all about so if ever you have friends or colleagues that would want to meet for a one-on-one HIV screening, you can contact us at 0 917-861-4084 and 0 927-806-7339. 

Kudos to our friends and partners:

  • The Love Project
  • Loveyourself 
  • HIV Awareness Campaign Group
  • Sustained Health Initiatives of the Philippines
  • Action for Health Initiatives of the Philippines
  • Davao City Reproductive Health Wellness Center
  • Cebu City Health office and social hygiene clinic
  • Cebu Plus
  • The Project Red Ribbon
  • All the community-based organizations who have gone out of their way to reach people for this project without a single centavo in exchange (sorry I am not able to list down all orgs)

CBS IN 10-15MINS! 

For more information please email us at hashCommunityoperations@gmail.com

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Grey’s Anatomy S13E17

The last conversation between Dr. Pierce and her mom, seconds before her mom died.

“…Orgasms… they are a gift, it’s your right! Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise”

“…never make yourself small for anyone, be your own person”

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Grey’s S13E1

“…..with a little coffee and a little sunlight your troubles will get smaller and the world will keep standing” 

“…past is past, what’s done is.done. But the future is ours to choose”

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A touching video from our friends at the RED WHISTLE


“…Celebrities’ script reading ends with unexpected twist.

In its latest campaign, “Together,” The Red Whistle gathered HIV awareness advocates like Regine Velasquez, Daiana Menezes, Jc Santos, Aiza Seguerra in a short video, to read a script, that ended in an unexpected twist. ”
#TogetherPH #Reach1Test1Save1

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