Taiwan Legislature Approves Draft Bill That Would Provide HIV-Positive People With No-Cost Treatment for Drug Addiction
Taiwan's legislative branch on Monday approved a draft bill that would allow HIV-positive people to receive no-cost treatment for drug addiction, the Taipei Times reports. The draft bill, which also would provide no-cost treatment for drug addiction to people with mental illnesses, was written by the Ministry of Justice and approved by the Judiciary Committee. Justice ministry representatives on Monday told the Judiciary Committee that drug use is a major mode of HIV transmission and that two of every three new HIV cases in Taiwan occur among injection drug users. They added that the government, therefore, should make no-cost drug addiction treatment available to people living with HIV/AIDS in Taiwan. Under Taiwan's Narcotics Endangerment Prevention Act, first-time and minor drug offenders are not required to face criminal charges, but they can be required to undergo treatment for drug use. The justice ministry last year opened four drug treatment centers in Taipei, Taichung, Kaohsiung and Taitung. More than 3,500 people in Taiwan currently receive treatment for drug addiction, according to justice ministry statistics (Chang, Taipei Times, 1/9).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.