SAN JOSE, Occidental Mindoro (PIA) -- The Municipal Health Office (MHO) San Jose conducted a Healthy Young Ones program held at San Jose National High School which aims to educate junior high school students about adolescence education, particularly on reproductive and mental health.
Dr. Lordivino T. Mesina, OIC Municipal Health Officer shared that one of the goals of the activity is to prevent teenage pregnancy. In 2022, the municipality recorded 357 cases of teenage pregnancy, a lower number compared to 2021 and 2020 cases.
"Ang goal natin ay hindi kayo (students) mapasama sa number of teenage pregnancies...dahil malaki ang impact [ng teenage pregnancy] hindi lang sa inyo, kundi sa mga pamilya niyo rin," the Municipal Health Officer explained.
(Our goal is to have you (students) not included in our teenage pregnancy cases...because it causes a huge impact not only to you, but to your families as well.)
Discussion on Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) and Sexually-Transmitted Infection (STI) was also held, led by Ms. Sonia Sy of San Jose District Hospital. Sy highlighted ways to prevent the infection as Occidental Mindoro had recorded an uptrend in HIV cases.
A free HIV testing service was also provided in the activity for students who wanted to take a test and were assured of the confidentiality of its results. Early detection, Sy explained, is ideal as there are medications to prevent further infection if one is confirmed positive of HIV.
“…Mas maagang [made-detect ang HIV], mas maganda [para] mabigyan ng tamang prevention, kasi wala minsang sintomas ang may mga HIV. Kapag may sintomas na na lumabas, ibig sabihin may opportunistic infection na…kaya dapat, bago dumating yun, malaman na agad,” Sy said.
(Earlier detection of HIV is ideal so that proper prevention can be administered, because there are times that there are no manifestation of symptoms of the virus. When symptoms start to show, it means that there is opportunistic infection…that is why we need to know before that happens.)
Topics on mental health and cases such as depression were also discussed. In the open-forum, Mesina underscored that the discussion aims to spread awareness on mental health issues and encouraged the students to seek professional health from MHO if needed.
In addition, Plan International introduced the OKY, a mobile application specializing in tracking menstrual cycles to help women take care of their bodies especially during menstruation.
An estimated number of 840 students participated in the activity, mostly Grade 10 students, with 23 female students from Grade 7 who received anti-cervical cancer prevention vaccines. (DSG/PIA MIMAROPA)