Major factors for HIV transmission in Vietnam

(VOV) -The rate of HIV infection via unprotected sexual intercourse cases has increased rapidly and is considered the main cause for the transmission of the disease in Vietnam.

This was announced by the Department of HIV/AIDS Prevention under the Ministry of Health at a conference in the southern province of Dong Nai on March 27.

The Department said since the first instances of HIV were discovered in 1990, Vietnam has recorded over 210,000 cases of people contracting the disease, leading to more than 63,000 fatalities.

In 2012 alone, the country has reported 14,100 new HIV infections and over 2,000 fatalities.

About 45 percent of the detected cases were caused by unsafe sexual intercourse, while the rate of HIV infections among drug users continued to fall, from 13.4 percent in 2011 to 11.6 percent last year.

The Health Ministry said although there was a decline in the overall number of HIV carriers detected last year, the downward trend was less pronounced than in previous years and more communes and wards across the country had found new people living with HIV that had previously been undetected.

It is estimated that a further 50,000 HIV patients do not know about their status, leading to concerns that they could  infect their partners unintentionally.

Although concentrating on the prevention of the disease, the Health Ministry will also strengthen the dissemination of information to raise public awareness of managing HIV/AIDS once infected.