Despite disapproval from the influential Roman Catholic church, the Philippine Health Department will promote the use of condoms to prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS.
"The use of condoms to prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS is different from their use for birth control," Health Undersecretary Mario Villaverde told a media briefing.
"The church's position is detrimental to public health," he said.
Villaverde did not say how condoms would be promoted in a country where all forms of artificial contraception are strongly opposed by the church.
Although rates of HIV/AIDS remain low in the Philippines, the level has recently gone up with an average of 29 cases detected each month in 2007 and 2008, compared with 20 cases a month in previous years.