Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, beginning Sept. 1 will convert a detoxification center administered by the Labor, War Invalids and Social Affairs Department into a hospital that provides HIV/AIDS treatment and care at no cost, the Vietnam News Brief Service reports.
According to Nguyen Thanh Tai, vice chair of the municipal people's committee, this is the first center of its kind in the country.
The 600-bed hospital, which will be named Nhan Ai Hospital, will be run by the city's health department and will provide to HIV-positive people at no cost treatment and care services worth about $75 to $94 monthly.
The center currently houses 150 HIV-positive people and plans to accept more HIV-positive people from other centers in the country.
Health experts estimate that there are about 40,000 to 50,000 HIV-positive people in the city (Vietnam News Brief Service, 8/31).
Although HIV prevalence in the country is below 0.5%, Ho Chi Minh City and Haiphong, Vietnam, have an HIV prevalence greater than 1%, according to a Center for Strategic and International Studies report presented in July in Hanoi, Vietnam (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 7/17).
This article was reprinted from khn.org with permission from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. Kaiser Health News, an editorially independent news service, is a program of the Kaiser Family Foundation, a nonpartisan health care policy research organization unaffiliated with Kaiser Permanente.