Vietnam Launches Country’s First HIV Prevention Campaign Aimed at Youth
Vietnam on Friday launched its first HIV prevention campaign aimed at controlling the spread of the virus among young people in the country, Viet Nam News reports (Viet Nam News, 9/12). The Asian Development Bank in July provided the country with a $20 million grant to help fund the project, which will use the mass media to inspire behavior changes among the country's youth. The government will provide $6.7 million for the project, which will last until 2011. The project aims to increase condom use and knowledge about HIV/AIDS, as well as discourage such risky behaviors as needle sharing among illicit drug users, Ayumi Koinisi, ADB country director, said. The initiative also will support nongovernmental organizations in 15 provinces and focus on community-based advocacy, peer education, life skills training and increased access to harm-reduction services. According to an ADB statement, young people ages 15 to 24 in 1994 in Vietnam accounted for about 10% of HIV-positive people in Vietnam, and that percentage has risen to 40% in recent years (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 7/26). The program, which is run by the National Committee for Population, Family and Children, also will help the government achieve the U.N. Millennium Development Goals, the News reports. The first phase of the campaign will be implemented in the provinces and cities of Bac Ninh, Hanoi, Ha Tay, Ninh, Phu Tho and Quang. The second phase will expand the campaign to an additional 10 provinces and cities, according to the News (Viet Nam News, 9/14).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.