Around 70,000 receive ARV treatment in Vietnam

HA NOI (VNS)– Approximately 70,000 people living with HIV have received antiretroviral (ARV) treatment since late 2005, the Ministry of Health said on Tuesday.The country now has 206,000 people living with HIV. On average, about 10,000 get ARV treatment each year.

The treatment helps 82.1 per cent of adults living with HIV and 82.8 per cent of children living with HIV to lengthen their lives by more than 12 months, said Nguyen Thanh Long, Deputy Minister of Health. This ratio is higher than the 80 per cent recommended by the World Health Organization.

However, Viet Nam continues to face challenges in treating the increasingly complicated HIV/AIDS epidemic, he said, such as a lack of medical staff who can carry out ARV treatment and discrimination against people living with HIV/AIDS. Reductions in international support for Viet Nam to combat the disease have compounded the problem. According to Long, 95 per cent of people living with HIV receive ARV treatment thanks to international support.

In an effort to tackle the challenges, Viet Nam plans to hire more medical workers and introduce more cost-effective treatment models, he said. – VNS

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