HVI/AIDS prevention campaign (Source: VNA)
Vietnam will focus on keeping the rate of new HIV cases below 0.3 percent by 2020 while reducing the impact of HIV/AIDS on socio-economic development.

The information was released at a workshop held in Hanoi on September 24 to design an HIV/AIDS prevention plan for 2016-2020.

The plan includes national targets of 80 percent of the population aged 15-49 having adequate knowledge of HIV, 80 percent of the population not discriminating against people living with HIV, and 90 percent of people living with HIV understanding their condition and receiving antiretroviral (ARV) treatment.

HIV/AIDS prevention will focus on providing sterile syringes for drug users, especially those in far-flung areas, expanding the use of new and traditional medicine in detoxification, studying and applying preventive measures against HIV and expanding the number of HIV testing clinics nationwide.

Director of the Ministry of Health’s Department of HIV/AIDS Prevention and Control Nguyen Hoang Long stressed the need for increased budget allocations for HIV/AIDS prevention in the coming years.

According to him, Vietnam detects around 12,000 new HIV cases and 2,000-3,000 fatalities connected to the virus each year.

As of June, there were 227,114 people living with HIV in Vietnam, 71,115 of which had progressed to full-blown AIDS.

From 2011-2015, the country helped 400,000 people avoid HIV infections and avoided 150,000 fatalities among people living with HIV.-VNA