Clinton Foundation, Vietnamese Health Ministry Sign Agreement To Provide Antiretrovirals to HIV-Positive Children
Former President Clinton on Wednesday in Hanoi, Vietnam, met with Vietnamese President Nguyen Minh Triet to sign an agreement that seeks by the end of 2007 to provide antiretroviral treatment to 1,200 HIV-positive children in Vietnam, AFP/Yahoo! News reports. The initiative, which is supported by the country's Ministry of Health and the Clinton Foundation and would triple the number of children in the country who are receiving antiretroviral drugs, aims to ensure that "all the children in Vietnam who need it have access to the medicine," according to Clinton (AFP/Yahoo! News, 12/6). Clinton also held a panel discussion, titled "Fighting HIV/AIDS, Empowering Youth in Vietnam," with a group of young medical students and an HIV/AIDS advocate who is living with the virus, Reuters reports. During the discussion, Clinton called for increased HIV testing and education to help reduce the stigma associated with HIV/AIDS (McCool, Reuters, 12/6). "Ignorance is killing us," he said, adding that the less information people have "the more likely they are to act in a really stupid way, a mean way, a cruel way toward people who are HIV-positive" (AFP/Yahoo! News, 12/6). The Vietnamese government estimates that 260,000 people in the country are living with HIV/AIDS, but public health officials say the actual number is higher (Stocking, AP/Seattle Post-Intelligencer, 12/6).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.