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Province of South Cotabato

WHO brings in doctors to study South Cotabato HIV, AIDS Program

Koronadal City—World Health Organization (WHO) invited doctors and other health workers from other regions in the Philippines to look into the local initiatives of South Cotabato in curtailing the spread of HIV virus.

John Codilla, Infectious Disease Program Focal Person, said at least 20 representatives visited South Cotabato for three days and observed the service delivery of HIV and AIDS Core Team Clinic and the Provincial Hospital for people living with HIV and AIDS.

“They also visited Lake Sebu where we have a strong presence of peer educators in every school and in the community,” Codilla said.

WHO chose South Cotabato as a benchmark area because of the competent referral system.

“They are amazed by the networking of both the public and private health care providers,” Codilla said.

With the assistance of the Integrated Provincial Health Office, the Dr. Arturo Pingoy Medical Center is waiting for the DOH approval as a treatment hub of People Living with HIV,  he explained.

Aside from DOH, Department of Social Welfare and Development Office extends quarterly financial assistance to PLHA while its local counterpart in the province facilitates transportation expenses. Private transport partner Yellow Bus Line provides its service by bringing patients to Southern Philippines Medical Center in Davao.

“We are now preparing when the time comes when anti-retroviral will be no longer be free and LGU is directed to provide its own allocation,” Codilla said.

As of press time, South Cotabato has P12M in a trust fund intended for future allocation.


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