The National Agency for the Control of AIDS (NACA) has advised Nigerians, especially youths, to take advantage of the spirit of love and togetherness that Valentine’s Day signifies to know their HIV status.
Director-General Dr. Gambo Aliyu said in a statement: “As the world gets set to celebrate the lovers’ day on February 14, it is important that all Nigerians know their HIV status, as it marks the entry point to prevention, treatment and care.
“A young person not tested may not have the opportunity to enjoy future Valentine’s Days if he or she is diagnosed late or presents with terminal complications related to HIV infection and AIDS.
“This period is particularly noted for young people expressing their love for one another. This can lead to impulsive decisions such as unprotected sex, resulting in unplanned pregnancies and an increased risk of acquiring sexually transmitted infections, including HIV/AIDS.”
NACA urged Nigerians, especially youths, to express love within the context of caring deeply for their loved ones and avoiding risky behaviour that will make them vulnerable to HIV/AIDS and other STDs.