Localities urged to implement HIV/AIDS prevention strategy

(VOV) -The central city of Danang held a conference on November 26 reviewing the progress of the HIV/AIDS prevention campaign in communities over the 2008-2012 period.

The conference also discussed implementing the national HIV/AIDS prevention strategy through 2020 while maintaining vision to 2030.

Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc asked localities to urgently review their programmes, learning from each other and disseminating the most effective models.

They were required to strive towards fulfilling the UN commitment of zero new HIV infections, zero discrimination and zero AIDS-related deaths. Financial and human resources must be allocated adequately to cope with the epidemic.

Treatment methods using alternative synthetics to replace illicit addictive substances should be expanded so that 80,000 drug users will benefit from methadone programmes by 2015.

The national strategy for HIV/AIDS prevention now aims to reduce the HIV infection rate to less than 0.3 percent by 2020, minimising its negative impact on socio-economic development.

It also includes comprehensive measures to care for and treat people with HIV, monitor the epidemic, allocate sufficient financial and human resources to the issue, and cooperate with international initiatives.

Over the past five years, the campaign has successfully raised public awareness and encouraged locals to engage in fighting HIV/AIDS in 60 out of 63 provinces nationwide,

More than 200,000 people are still living with HIV, of which over 58,500 have developed full-blown AIDS.

Every month more than 1,000 people are found to be HIV positive and the infection is spreading to geographical groups previously judged low risk.

The most common method of transmission is now via sex. Vietnam’s highest rates of HIV infection are in the northern and southern regions.