Increasing awareness of HIV/AIDS helps people to feel empowered to take responsibility of their own sexual health by assessing their own risks and protecting themselves from HIV/AIDS. You can take a stand against HIV/AIDS by participating in the programmes and initiatives organised under the AIDS Education Programme.
The AIDS Education Programme, spearheaded by Health Promotion Board, was launched in 1985. The Communicable Disease Education Department in the Adult Health Division (AHD) and the Youth Health Promotion Department in the Youth Health Division (YHD) develop and implement HIV education for the respective target groups.
The number of Singaporeans infected with HIV/AIDS has been on the rise. For more information, click on the latest statistics available on the Ministry of Health website. While many advances have been made in the frontiers of treatment, a cure or vaccine for HIV/AIDS has yet to be found. Until then, prevention through the dissemination of accurate information and education remains the best way to contain the disease.
HPB organises awareness programmes to the general public as well as targeted interventions with customised messages.
The Programme will continue to create awareness and educate the general public on the following:
- the seriousness of HIV/AIDS
- the different modes of transmission
- behaviours that can put one at risk of HIV infection, such as having casual sex, having multiple sexual partners, having sex with commercial sex workers, injecting drug use, and receiving blood that is contaminated with HIV
- the importance of maintaining a safe, single-partner relationship
- the importance of going for early and regular HIV screening if one thinks that he or she is at risk of HIV infection
- reducing the stigma against people living with HIV/AIDS (PLHIV)
Targeted programmes are also conducted with specific messages crafted and woven into these customised interventions. The objectives are to:
- create heightened awareness and increase their perceived susceptibility of getting infected with the HIV;
- encourage them to protect themselves or reduce their risk of getting infected with the HIV by:
- maintaining a safe, single-partner relationship
- avoiding casual sex, sex with multiple partners and sex with commercial sex workers
- practising correct and consistent condom use when engaging in risky sexual practices
- Encourage those practising unprotected sex to undergo early and regular HIV testing so that infection can be detected as early as possible
- Inform them that there are legal rights to protect individuals from being infected with HIV. A person who is HIV positive is required by law to inform his/her sex partner of his status. If he/she is uncertain of his HIV status and has been practising risky behaviours, he is required to take protective measures to prevent infecting his/her sexual partner. Learn more about the Infectious Diseases Act.
For AHD: General population, workplaces, and at-risk groups e.g. men who buy sex locally or overseas and young adults who engage in unprotected casual sex.
For YHD: School students currently in secondary schools, Vocational Training Centres, Institutes of Technical Education, Junior Colleges, Centralised Institutes, and Polytechnics.
Educational efforts are tailored to meet the specific needs and knowledge level of the target audience and sustained throughout the year.
RESPECT - a Workplace HIV/AIDS Education Programme
RESPECT (Rallying Employers to Support the Prevention, Education and Control of STI/HIV/AIDS) is a comprehensive programme for workplaces. It includes talks, workshops, exhibitions and other interactive programmes. Find out more.
Since 2006, HPB has organized large scale community events to raise awareness on HIV/AIDS to the public and to reduce the stigma towards PLHIV. Find out more
School AIDS Education Programme
The School AIDS Education Programme aims to raise AIDS/sexually transmitted infections (STI) awareness among school students, inform students about ways to prevent such infections and discourage promiscuous sexual behaviour.