In December, Wanggo Gallaga, son of acclaimed director Peque Gallaga, surprised the whole country when he admitted on national television that he has HIV. His admission was met with confusion: How can a young, healthy-looking professional be infected with the dreaded virus? In the minds of many Filipinos, Wanggo does not fit �the mold� of a person who has HIV or AIDS.
More than a decade ago, statistics showed that most Filipinos with HIV or AIDS are either sex workers or OFWs. Now, according to the Department of Health, infected patients are getting younger and younger. Last year, more than 60% are between the ages of 20 and 29. Most are males, infected through sexual intercourse with the same sex. Are they the new face of HIV and AIDS in the Philippines?
In his interviews, Wanggo says the main reason he came out is to help educate Filipinos about the virus. Having HIV or AIDS is no longer the death sentence it was before. With medication and a proper lifestyle, people with HIV and AIDS can now live normal lives. He also stressed the importance of getting tested for the virus.
In the US, experts are continually looking for a cure and finding ways to improve the lives of people living with the virus.
Learn more about HIV and AIDS on "World View Presents Think Positive!" this Sunday, April 12, at 10:30 PM after Ful Haus. Only on GMA-7!
"World View Presents Think Positive!" is produced by GMA News and Public Affairs. Executive producer and writer, Jay Orense. Writer and researcher, Glenn Ala. Director and segment producer, May Bautista. (GMA-7 Press Release)