Action month calls for entire community’s engagement in HIV/AIDS fight hinh anh 1Healthcare staff give advice to drug addiction patients using Methadone at a treatment facility in Dai Tu district, Thai Nguyen province (Photo: VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) – The ongoing National Action Month for HIV/AIDS Prevention and Control 2023 is themed “Creative community - Determination to end the AIDS pandemic by 2030”, which stresses the need for the entire community’s engagement in the work.

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Phan Thi Thu Huong, Director of the Vietnam Administration of HIV/AIDS Control under the Ministry of Health, said the country is assessed by international organisations as a bright spot in the global map of the HIV/AIDS fight. However, there remain challenges as HIV is transmitted mostly by sexual contact, more popular among men who have sex with men (MSM), in recent years.

Elaborating the theme of this year’s National Action Month, she said the community mentioned here covers ministries, sectors, and organisations from central to local levels, the private sector, and social organisations. It especially targets communities, including HIV patients and those with high-risk behaviours such as MSM, transgender women, drug users, sex workers, and sex partners of those persons.

The theme aims to remind that HIV/AIDS prevention and control require the engagement of the political system from central to local levels and the entire community, along with creative methods since the understanding about HIV/AIDS has changed much, she noted.

The HIV situation has changed while the approach to and interventions related to HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment have also changed. More effective tools are now available to control this pandemic by 2030, Huong went on.

There are currently 534 HIV/AIDS treatment establishments nationwide, including 506 supplying the antiretroviral (ARV) therapy covered by health insurance. As of September 14, there were 177,009 patients receiving ARV therapy, including 2,748 children and 174,261 adults, statistics show.

Efforts are being made to expand this therapy under the health insurance coverage and raise the rate of patients on ARV therapy achieving viral suppression to at least 95%.

Action month calls for entire community’s engagement in HIV/AIDS fight hinh anh 2There are currently 534 HIV/AIDS treatment establishments nationwide, including 506 supplying the antiretroviral (ARV) therapy covered by health insurance. (Photo: VNA)
To ensure financial self-sufficiency, the country has been working to switch funding for the ARV therapy from assistance sources to health insurance. It has also been mobilising the provision of anti-AIDS services by private health facilities. Technology application is also being boosted to manage and monitor the pandemic, Huong said.
 
Among the 250,000 people living with HIV in Vietnam at present, 88% know their status, 80% who know their status are on ARV therapy, and 98.4% of those on ARV therapy has achieved viral suppression./.
VNA