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AIDS Education through Condom Distribution?

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I was in oblivion and utterly aghast by the incompetence of the people leading the Department of Health when they announced its plan to distribute condoms to students as a response to the increasing number of new cases of HIV-AIDS inDOH the Philippines. According to a news article, infections of HIV-AIDS has been increasing in the last 5 years and new cases are found greatly among teenagers in the Philippines. Unprotected sex is one of the leading causes of this incident.

As this is the identified cause of the problem; the most practical solution would be to protect students from engaging into unprotected sex. The logic behind the action seems to be valid. To solve a problem, we attack its source to stop it from recurring. In this case, the source is unprotected sex and therefore the logical conclusion is to supply condom as a means of protection.

But in this case, offering free condoms to students is only detrimental to them as the use of condom does not necessarily guarantee to prevent HIV infection. Further, it can also send a wrong message that is it is okay to have sex as long as you have protection.  Condom distribution programs can be cost-effective structural interventions that provide communities with the resources they need to prevent the spread of HIV. However, it does not address the problem.

To achieve, it is essential to address the apparent ignorance of students as to the effects of engaging in sexual activity at their young age. Second, parents have to be involved in this campaign to ensure continuity of the education.  Third, the community must also be given appropriate orientation on the dangers of acquiring HIV-AIDS. Here, education has to be more than just imparting knowledge to students. It has to enable them to recognize the dangers of engaging into sexual contact with many people and to empower them to act appropriately. Without these form of learning through education be it in the classroom setting or in any modes, condom distribution will just result to more and more cases of HIV AIDS in the Philippines.

 

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