Vietnamese HIV infectees must inform partners infection status

By Hoang Thuy, Viet Tuan   November 16, 2020 | 10:48 pm PT
Vietnamese HIV infectees must inform partners infection status
A person holds a vial containing positive HIV test sample. Illustration photo by Shutterstock.
HIV patients in Vietnam must inform their partners of their infection status as soon as possible, according to a recently amended law on HIV/AIDS prevention and control.

The amendments to the Law on HIV/AIDS Prevention and Control, passed by National Assembly on Monday, dictate that those infected with HIV must inform their husbands, wives, people they plan to marry and cohabitants of their infection status.

Those infected with HIV, drug users, those engaging in prostitution and same-sex intercourse, those who underwent sex reassignment, among others, are prioritized to access information on HIV/AIDS.

HIV test results would be disclosed to patients, their husbands and wives, as well as the parents and guardians of those still under 18 or with cognitive disabilities, the law states.

Those at least 15 years of age may now voluntarily request HIV testing, instead of the previous minimum age requirement of 16, it says.

Vietnam is considered one of four countries with the best HIV/AIDS treatment in the world, along with Germany, Switzerland, and the U.K., Minister of Health Nguyen Thanh Long told a National Assembly meeting in September. Over the past decade, the country has kept its community HIV infection rate below 0.3 percent, he added.

In 2014, Vietnam became the first country in Asia to adopt the 90-90-90 targets set by Joint United Nations Program on HIV/AIDS, under which by 2020, 90 percent of those living with HIV would know their health status, 90 percent of people who know their status are on HIV treatment, and 90 percent of all patients on treatment would have undetectable levels of HIV in their bodies.

Out of 250,000 HIV patients in Vietnam, only 210,000 know their HIV status, according to health ministry data.

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