Vietnamese HIV/AIDS Department Announces Funding for Prevention Efforts
Vietnamese officials announced recently that about 678 billion dong, or about $38.7 million, will be allocated for HIV/AIDS prevention efforts in the country in 2009, the VNA/VietnamPlus.com reports. The announcement was made during a press briefing earlier this week held by the Department for HIV/AIDS Prevention and the Vietnam Journalists Association to review Vietnam's HIV/AIDS efforts in 2008. Health officials at the briefing said that more than 27,000 people living with HIV/AIDS received treatment through one of the 207 district-level clinics put in place last year and that about 6,000 peer educators and health workers distributed information about the disease to 53.8% of the country's districts.
The new funding will help provide antiretroviral treatment to an estimated 32,000 people living with HIV/AIDS. It also will be used to provide post-exposure prophylaxis to health workers. In addition, the funding will allow up to 90% of HIV-positive pregnant women to receive antiretroviral treatment and information about preventing mother-to-child transmission. Last year, 20,260 new HIV cases were reported in Vietnam, of which 7,452 had progressed to AIDS, according to the HIV/AIDS department. The city of Ho Chi Minh reported the largest number of HIV cases with more than 34,000, accounting for more than 25% of the total number of cases in Vietnam (VNA/VietnamPlus.com, 5/12).