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Posts Tagged ‘AIDS’

SGGP continues relief aids to flood victims

In Uncategorized on November 11, 2010 at 8:22 am

SGGP Newspaper gives relief aids to central flood victims

In Uncategorized on October 13, 2010 at 7:46 am

Sai Gon Giai Phong Newspaper has cooperated with the central province of Quang Binh’s Red Cross to provide instant noodles and mineral water for flood-hit victims on isolated islets in Gianh River on October 7.

A grandmother and her grandchild on Minh Ha islet eat instant noodles after being hungry for several days.

The areas including Con Nam, Tan Dinh, Minh Ha and Dong Thanh were the most heavily damaged places in the province. More than 3,200 residents have been hungry and cold for four days.

After launching the program “For the central flood victims” on October 5, the newspaper has received VND300 million (US$15,000) from the Sai Gon Commercial Joint Stock Bank (SCB), VND100 million from Vietnam Dairy Products Joint Stock Company (Vinamilk) and 2 tons or rice from HCM City Food Company.

Until the evening of October 7, the Ho Chi Minh City Relief Agency has received more than VND3.8 billion from individuals, organizations and agencies.

48 people were dead by the floods in the central region. Among them, Ha Tinh reported 7 dead, Nghe An  5, Quang Binh 33, and Quang Tri 3. 18 people are still missing and 19 were injured, according to the statistics on October 7.

All passengers who were stuck at the train stations were cleared by 12 pm on the same day.
The Vietnam Railway reopens all Thong Nhat ( from Hanoi to HCM city ) trains on October 8.

Related articles:
65 dead, missing as flood hits Central Vietnam
Quang Binh residents face serious flood
Dead, missing victims in central Vietnam continue to raise
Eight dead, missing in strong flood in central Vietnam

Source: SGGP

AIDS charity Life Ball raises 1.5 mln euros

In Uncategorized on July 22, 2010 at 11:17 am

VIENNA, July 22, 2010 (AFP) – Vienna’s glitzy AIDS charity Life Ball last weekend raised 1.5 million euros (1.9 million dollars) for international and national HIV and AIDS projects, organisers said Thursday.

This year’s event on the square in front of the Austrian capital’s neo-Gothic Town Hall and attended by former US president Bill Clinton and Hollywood actress Whoopi Goldberg was marred by heavy thunder storms and cloudbursts.

“If the weather had been better, the amount of money raised would probably have been even higher,” commented organiser Gery Keszler.

Nevertheless, tens of thousands of gays, lesbians, drag queens and their friends, all dressed in outrageous costumes, paid between 75-150 euros for a ticket to the 18th annual fashion-show-cum-party event, aimed as a brilliant and dazzling pendant to Vienna’s stiff and haughty Opera Ball much earlier in the year.

Picture shows new HIV protection gel for women on July 21, 2010 during the 18th International AIDS Conference in Vienna.AFP PHOTO

Also in Vienna, the 18th World AIDS conference, which runs until Friday, is being attended by some 25,000 experts, health professionals and policy makers to discuss progress in fighting AIDS and look at ways to provide further prevention and treatment against the HIV virus which causes it.

Source: SGGP

Obama vows to cut HIV cases with new AIDS strategy

In Uncategorized on July 15, 2010 at 1:01 pm

WASHINGTON (AFP) – President Barack Obama declared Tuesday that any new case of HIV/AIDS was one too many, as he rolled out a new national strategy to cut infections and improve care for those with the disease.

The White House displays a large red ribbon for World AIDS day in 2009. (AFP file)

Thirty years after the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) burst to global attention, the first-ever National HIV/AIDS Strategy will demand action from federal, state and tribal governments and medical and scientific communities.

It envisages cutting the annual number of new domestic infections by 25 percent over five years.

“The question is not whether we know what to do, but whether we will do it?” Obama said, as he officially unveiled the new strategy at a reception for HIV/AIDS activists at the White House.

“We are here because we believe that while HIV transmission rates in this country are not as high as they once were, every new case is one case too many.

“We are here because we believe in an America where those living with HIV/AIDS are not viewed with suspicion but treated with respect, where they are provided the medications and the healthcare they need.”

In a vision statement, Obama’s strategy says “the United States will become a place where new HIV infections are rare.”

Those who are infected, regardless of age, gender, race/ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity or economic level, will get “unfettered access to high-quality, life-extending care, free from stigma and discrimination.”

The HIV/AIDS epidemic in the United States has claimed nearly 600,000 lives, although the disease has faded from the headlines in recent years, as new life-extending anti-retroviral drug therapies have emerged.

But around 56,000 people still become infected with HIV every year.

There are currently 1.1 million Americans living with HIV, according to US government figures.

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said the new strategy represented a turning point for US government policy.

“Either we could chose to get used to HIV and AIDS and accept that it was a permanent feature of US society … or we could chose to double down and refocus our efforts,” she said.

“We refuse to accept a stalemate — to dig in and just hold the disease at bay.”

The new Obama strategy has three goals: to reduce the number of new infections; to increase access to care for those with HIV; and to reduce HIV-related health disparities.

The new strategy recognizes the tight fiscal straitjacket under which the administration is operating, after the worst financial crisis in decades.

It states that better results should be possible to achieve within existing funding levels and says the case for additional investments where they are required should be highlighted.

The plan includes more than 100 specific directives to federal agencies to develop standards for prevention programs and other steps to meet the new goals.

The plan is designed to intensify HIV prevention efforts in most at risk communities, including gay and bisexual men, African-American men and women, the Latino community, addicts and drug users.

It also envisages improving the education of all Americans about HIV/AIDS and how to prevent the spread of the disease.

The administration also plans to use the new Obama health care reform plan passed this year as a platform for expanding treatment of HIV/AIDS for the most vulnerable communities.

During the event, in the ornate East Room of the White House, Obama was interrupted by one guest who shouted “Mr President!”

Obama closed down the man’s protest by saying he would chat to the man after his speech: “That’s why I invited you here, right? So you don’t have to yell.”

Obama’s plan drew mainly praise from groups fighting AIDS. Georges Benjamin, executive director of the American Public Health Association, called the new strategy “a lifesaving public health intervention.”

Jennifer Kates of the Kaiser Family Foundation said more efforts are needed to fight AIDS.

“People are just not as concerned about HIV,” Kates said. “There is a sense we have treatments, that HIV doesn’t seem as bad as it used to. … There is more complacency.”

Obama announced in October that his administration would end a ban on people with HIV/AIDS traveling to the United States, which rights groups had branded discriminatory and harmful.

The measure came into force in January.

The United States has also contributed tens of billions of dollars for HIV/AIDS relief around the world, with the President’s Plan for Emergency AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) — one of the most lauded legacy achievements of former president George W. Bush.

Source: SGGP

‘Significant advances’ made towards AIDS vaccine

In Uncategorized on July 15, 2010 at 12:57 pm

After decades of trying to develop a vaccine against AIDS, global health authorities are finally beginning to make “significant advances” towards their goal, Anthony Fauci, head of the US institute of infectious diseases, told AFP.

“Up to a few years ago, even though we have been trying for a couple of decades to develop a vaccine, unsuccessfully, we have not even had a small clue that we were going in the right direction,” Fauci told AFP.

But two key events that have taken place in the past few years have changed that and led to “significant advances in the development of a vaccine,” said Fauci, who is head of the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Disease (NIAID).

Dr. Sanjay Phogat, a scientist at the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative laboratory, looks over test results in New York

The first of those key turning-point events was a clinical trial of an HIV/AIDS vaccine which was conducted last year in Thailand on 16,000 people.

“The results showed a small to modest positive effect on the acquisition of HIV — not good enough to be able to distribute a vaccine but good enough to tell us that it was a conceptual advance that at least makes us feel now that a vaccine is possible,” Fauci said.

Then, last week, scientists at NIAID published a paper in the journal Science about research that had helped them to identify two antibodies in an HIV-positive individual, which, when put together “block 90 percent” of HIV strains, Fauci said.

“What that is telling us is that you can identify the portion of the virus that you would like to use as a vaccine, because we know that when the antibodies bind to that portion, it knock down the virus,” he said.

The next step will be to try to inject that part of the virus into an individual to produce a protective response against HIV infection, said Fauci in an interview with AFP days before the 18th international conference on AIDS, to be held in Vienna, Austria.

The Thai study and the report in Science have left scientists feeling “much more confident that ultimately we will have a vaccine” against HIV/AIDS, although it was still impossible to say exactly when that would be, said Fauci.

An AIDS vaccine was probably several years away, which means that in the meantime, the fight against HIV/AIDS must continue to focus on prevention by using tried and true tactics such as condom distribution, male circumcision, blocking mother-to-baby transmission and offering syringe exchange programs, he said.

Ways have to be found, too, to improve access to these preventive measures, especially in developing countries where only 20 percent of “populations who would benefit” actually have access to them, he added.

Along with improving access to the preventive methods, Fauci urged global health authorities and governments to continue to work to develop other forms of prevention, such as microbicides.

And he recommended “treating as many people as we possibly can because we know that when you treat more people, you lessen the probability that they would infect other people.

“You could almost have what we call treatment as a form of prevention,” until a vaccine is finally developed, said Fauci.

Source: SGGP

Medical students get training on AIDS

In Uncategorized on April 1, 2010 at 4:40 pm

Medical students get training on AIDS

QĐND – Thursday, April 01, 2010, 21:37 (GMT+7)

More than 200 lecturers in Medicine from universities in the South and Central Highlands on March 31 met in Hai Phong Medical School to review a pre-service training project on HIV/AIDS care and prevention.

The pilot project under review that was carried out at Hai Phong Medical School and Hai Phong Medical College introduced HIV patient care as a specialised subject for medicinal students.

Representatives from Vietnam Administration for HIV/AIDS Control (VAAC); representatives from practicum sites in Hai Phong, such as the city’s hospitals, health centers, drug addiction treatment centers; and representatives from international donors and non-government organisations, including United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Pathfinder International, Family Health International and PACT attended the conference.

Under the pilot programme, medical and nursing students
attended small community clinics to learn a more client-friendly approach to HIV care, and strengthen their counseling skills. It is critical that students in Hai Phong learn this, as the city is ranked third for HIV/AIDS infections, according to organisers.

The project, the first of its kind in Vietnam , has been implemented since 2007, funded by PEPFAR through USAID, PACT, CDC and technically supported by Pathfinder International and Family Health International.

So far, 382 medical students and 587 nursing students have been taught using the new HIV/AIDS curricula and in coming years all students at the two schools will participate, making a significant contribution to the health sector, since annually Hai Phong Medical School provides training for 500 medical doctors and 200 nursing students.

Source: VNA

Source: QDND

Japan aids Vietnam with container screeners

In Uncategorized on March 29, 2010 at 2:39 pm

Japan aids Vietnam with container screeners

QĐND – Monday, March 29, 2010, 21:24 (GMT+7)

The Tan Cang-Cat Lai customs office under the Ho Chi Minh City Customs Department is about to receive X-ray container screeners worth US$ 9.6 million, aided by the Japanese Government.

Under the schedule, the machines will arrive in Vietnam on April 2nd.

With the assistance, Tan Cang-Cat Lai will become the Vietnamese first seaport to install the X-ray container screening system.

Tan Cang-Cat Lai is also the largest container port in Vietnam, which transports up 45 per cent of Vietnam’s total sea-going cargo.

The X-ray container screening system is expected to help the port operate more effectively and quickly.

Source: DDDN

Translated by Thu Nguyen

Source: QDND

South Africa expands AIDS treatment for babies, mothers

In World on December 3, 2009 at 2:34 am

South African President Jacob Zuma on Tuesday unveiled a dramatic expansion in treatment for pregnant women and babies with HIV, sealing a turnaround in the AIDS fight in the world’s worst-affected country.

Zuma said that all babies with HIV will receive treatment at public facilities from next April, while women will receive care earlier in their pregnancies in a bid to prevent transmission to newborns.

He also announced that he was preparing to take a HIV test himself, and urged the public to do the same.

His speech cemented a sharp break with past policies, when the previous government of Thabo Mbeki questioned the link between HIV and AIDS and promoted garlic and beetroot instead of medication.

“This decision will contribute significantly towards the reduction of infant mortality over time,” Zuma said in a nationally televised speech to mark World AIDS Day.

A young boy is pictured at a shelter for HIV-infected mothers and their children in Johannesburg on November 25.

An estimated 5.7 million of South Africa’s 48 million people have HIV, including 280,000 children, according to the UN AIDS agency.

Currently anti-retroviral drugs are provided to babies based on how weak their immune system has become.

People with both HIV and tuberculosis will also qualify for expanded treatment, while Zuma said every health facility in the country would be equipped to provide care, which is currently limited to a few centres with special accreditation.

“What does this all mean? It means that we will be treating significantly larger numbers of HIV positive patients. It means that people will live longer and more fulfilling lives,” Zuma said.

“It does not mean that people should not use condoms consistently and correctly during every sexual encounter,” he added.

Speaking with a candor rarely seen among African leaders, Zuma also said that he would receive an HIV test.

“I am making arrangements for my own test. I have taken HIV tests before, and I know my status. I will do another test soon,” he said. “I urge you to start planning for your own tests.”

The tone marks a dramatic change for Zuma himself, who in 2006 said that he had showered to wash away the risk of AIDS after having sex with an HIV-positive woman. At the time, he was head of the National AIDS Council.

The new drive aims to meet the government’s goal of halving the number of new infections by 2011 while providing treatment to 80 percent of the people who need it.

Health ministry spokesman Fidel Radebe said the government did not yet have an estimate of how many people would benefit from the new measures, or for how much the expanded treatment would cost.

South Africa runs the world’s largest anti-retroviral programme, but under the existing scheme nearly one million people are still believed to need treatment.

The United States announced that it would provide South Africa with an additional 120 million dollars to buy more drugs over the next two years, in response to a request by Zuma.

Under Mbeki and his health minister Manto Tshabalala-Msimang, South Africa became an international pariah for defying scientific evidence and stalling the roll-out of anti-retroviral drugs.

A recent Harvard study found that 365,000 people died prematurely because of the delay.

Since Zuma took office in May, he has made repeated public statements about the need to fight the disease — in stark contrast to Mbeki’s silence.

The disease has already taken a staggering toll on South Africa.

An estimated 1.5 million children have been orphaned by AIDS. A new study released last month found that by 2015, that number could rise to 5.7 million — or one-third of the nation’s children.

Source: SGGP Bookmark & Share

Nation shows commitment to AIDS prevention

In Uncategorized on November 11, 2008 at 2:27 am

Hanoi (VNA) – Many activities will take place across Vietnam during the National Month of Action for HIV/AIDS Control, which begins on Nov. 10.

A ceremony will take place in Hanoi on Nov. 16 to launch the movement of “All people taking part in the fight against HIV/AIDS in communities,” as part of the campaign.

The organising board said that it plans to hold meetings, marches, arts performances and TV shows highlighting the contributions made by people living with HIV to the control of HIV/AIDS, in addition to launching anti-HIV/AIDS propaganda competitions and journalism prizes.

The health ministry reported that to date, more than 132,000 people in Vietnam have been infected with HIV, resulting in 40,000 deaths. Three-quarters of the infected are men and 44 percent of them are drug addicts.

The epidemic is now present in every one of the country’s 63 cities and provinces and is spreading at an alarming pace in the northern provinces of Cao Bang and Yen Bai.-

Canada aids ethnic minority women

In Uncategorized on August 12, 2008 at 11:31 am

HA NOI — Ethnic minority women in three highland provinces will benefit from a VND1 billion (CAD63,500) grant from the Canadian Embassy. The Embassy yesterday signed the money over to the Fund for Local Initiatives project, which aims to improve the living conditions of the poor.

Canadian Ambassador, Gabriel-M.Lessard, and officials from women’s unions in Lai Chau, Dien Bien and Dak Nong – the provinces receiving aid – were in Ha Noi for the signing ceremony.

Of the total aid, Lai Chau Province will receive VND350 million, Dien Bien VND365 million and Dac Nong VND292 million.

“Low-production capacity is a challenge facing industries in mountainous provinces, as is learning new skills, so ethnic minority woman are living rough,” Nguyen Thi Thanh Hoa, chairwoman of Viet Nam Women’s Union said.

The Fund for Local initiatives has mapped out plans for projects lasting one year in the region, aiming to increase leadership capacity of commune-level females, and provide loans to enterprises run by ethnic minority women.

The Ha Noi based Centre for Education Promotion and Empowerment of Women will co-operate with women’s unions in the area to implement the projects.

Projects will also provide training courses to enhance awareness of issues including domestic violence and resolving family issues.

The Fund would give first priority to poor and vulnerable women, Canadian Ambassador Gabriel-M.Lessard said.

“The signing of these projects illustrates our confidence in the long-term partnership between the Canadian Embassy and the Viet Nam Women’s Union,” he said.

“We highly appreciate encouraging results in advancing women’s causes.”

This event is one of the activities to celebrate the 35th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Canada and Viet Nam. –