The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) in the Philippines belied the “sensationalized media reports suggesting that there is a new and untreatable strain of the HIV virus (sic) in the country.”
In a statement, Dr. Louie Ocampo, UNAIDS Philippines country director, said that “the supposed ‘new strain’ of the virus is fake news.” This is because “the variants of the HIV found in the country have not changed and are similar to the strains of the virus found throughout Asia and in other parts of the world.”
Ocampo added that HIV is an ever-evolving virus. As such, mutations and shifts from one subtype to another have been previously described. But “the strains present in the country have not been documented to be more infectious than other virus variants, nor resistant to the current treatment regimen.”
All strains found in the Philippines are “effectively treated with standard antiretroviral therapy”.
Also, “as with all strains of HIV, “prevention measures such as consistent condom use, pre-exposure prophylaxis, and universal treatment which achieves viral suppression are effective in reducing transmission.”