government is planning to launch its biennial condom
promotion campaign in the fall but will initially limit the
number of condom ads on television in light of complaints by
the Catholic Church that the campaign promotes sexual
activity, Inter Press Service reports. Health minister Pedro
Garcia said the campaign would focus on field work and radio
ads to avoid disputes with television stations opposed to
the ads. In the past, Catholic university TV stations in
Santiago and Valparaiso, as well as the privately owned
Megavision network, have refused to air the ads. The
campaign will eventually include television stations but
will offer short public service pieces instead of
commercials, Garcia said.
There are as many as 50,000 HIV-positive people in
Chile, according to estimates by nongovernmental agencies.
In the past five years HIV infection has increased 29.1%
among Chilean women, according to the country's National
AIDS Commission. The condom campaign will seek to promote
condom use to prevent HIV infections occurring during both
heterosexual and gay sex. The program also will focus
heavily on safer-sex messages for men and women who engage
in extramarital affairs or who have multiple sex partners.