Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

5/19/2014 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Virus spreads among community that has long been stigmatized by medical community

Homosexual men in Vietnam - those who identify as being gay or bisexual, or men who have sex with men, or MSM are now at a greater risk for both AIDS and the HIV virus. Homosexual men in the country are marginalized and hidden due to societal stigma.

The new spread of the disease is most prevalent in Vietnam's two largest cities: Hanoi, with a population of 6.5 million people and Ho Chi Minh City, home to 7.4 million people.

The new spread of the disease is most prevalent in Vietnam's two largest cities: Hanoi, with a population of 6.5 million people and Ho Chi Minh City, home to 7.4 million people.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

5/19/2014 (1 year ago)

Published in Asia Pacific

Keywords: Vietnam, gay men, HIV/AIDS, stigma


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - "The evidence clearly shows that MSM in Vietnam are a population at a higher HIV risk that requires focus," Christopher Fontaine, an adviser for the Joint UN Program on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) in Vietnam, said.

"Out of all of Vietnam's sub-epidemics, the epidemic among MSM appears to be rising the fastest."

Starvation never takes a vacation --

The new spread of the disease is most prevalent in Vietnam's two largest cities: Hanoi, with a population of 6.5 million people and Ho Chi Minh City, home to 7.4 million people.

According to the 2012 Integrated Biological and Behavioral Surveillance (IBBS) survey, the HIV prevalence rate of MSM in Hanoi soared from 11 to 20 percent, while in Ho Chi Minh City it more than doubled from 6 to 14 percent between 2006 and 2009.

MSM with HIV are primarily seen as an urban problem. High levels of stigma toward men having sex with men across is aiding in the spread of the disease, health experts warn.

"Although same-sex relationships aren't illegal in Vietnam, they are not well accepted by Vietnamese society," Fontaine said. "Men who have sex with men must enter an underground system in order to form sexual relationships. This is a huge barrier to reaching them with HIV services."

Vietnam still lacks an accurate countrywide HIV prevalence rate for MSM as IBBS data was only collected in four "hotspot" cities, three of which had rates of over 10 percent.

One young Vietnamese man has been careful not to reveal his HIV status or sexual orientation. He's afraid of double stigma in a country where people with HIV face discrimination and traditional parents often disown homosexual offspring.

"In my situation, I decided not to share my status," he said. "I'm not sure what kind of difficulties I will face as a gay man with HIV."

The situation makes it particularly hard for outreach workers to debunk false or low perceptions of HIV risk found within Vietnam's MSM population, estimated at 285,000.

"New infections are increasing for MSM but there are a limited number of them seeking services," Son Minh, executive board member of the Vietnamese Network of MSM and Transgender People says.

"It's our biggest concern since we cannot educate them on safe sex."

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for July 2015
Universal:
That political responsibility may be lived at all levels as a high form of charity.
Evangelization: That, amid social inequalities, Latin American Christians may bear witness to love for the poor and contribute to a more fraternal society.



Comments


More Asia Pacific

Unofficial council orders two sisters to be raped and paraded naked for brother's actions in India Watch

Image of An Indian woman is one of many protesters against rape.

By Kenya Sinclair (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

There is an ongoing rape crisis in India and things are only getting worse. An unelected council of elders ordered the rape and public humiliation of Meenakshi Kumari, 23, and her 15-year-old sister because their brother dared to marry outside his status. LOS ANGELES, ... continue reading


Chinese man without arms tends to paralyzed mother - feeding her food with spoon in teeth Watch

Image of Forty-eight-year-old Chen Xinyin from Chongqing, southwest China lost both his arms at seven years of age. Putting in a full day's worth of work, he know tends to his paralyzed, elderly mother - by feeding her with a spoon clenched in his teeth.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Forty-eight-year-old Chen Xinyin from Chongqing, southwest China lost both his arms at seven years of age. Putting in a full day's worth of work, he know tends to his paralyzed, elderly mother - by feeding her with a spoon clenched in his teeth. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading


'I knew then my life was over': The heartbreaking reality for teen rape victims shamed in India Watch

Image of

By Kenya Sinclair (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Indian women suffer as rapists force families to accept money in exchange for silence. In many villages, women are blamed for being raped and men do not marry single mothers, as such women are seen as shameful. Without time to finish their educations, and beaten down ... continue reading


North Korean submarines suspiciously missing following the dissolution of standoff with South Korea Watch

Image of Prime Minister Kin Jong Un.

By Linky C. (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A few days after Kim Jong Un ended a stand-off with South Korea, 50 North Korean submarines were reported to have vanished from radar. A possible surprise attack from the North is expected. MUNTINLUPA CITY, PHILIPPINES (Catholic Online) - The North Korean submarines ... continue reading


Family mourns loss of newborn after it is attack by rats in hospital Watch

Image of Rat infestation in Indian hospital leads to gruesome newborn death.

By Kenya Sinclair (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A newborn died of rat bites in a government-ran hospital in the city of Vajayawada, located within the state of Andhra Pradesh, India. Los Angeles, California (Catholic Online) - The newborn boy was born in the government-ran hospital where he was sent to the pediatric ... continue reading


1,500-year-old mummified newborn uncovered in Siberia could provide insight into ancient Siberian life Watch

Image of A newborn mummy discovered in Siberia.

By Linky C. (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The remains of a newborn that was accidentally mummified 1500 years ago has been discovered in an ancient grave in Siberia. This discovery could lead to the unraveling of several mysteries concerning ancient Siberians. MUNTINLUPA CITY, PHILIPPINES (Catholic Online) - ... continue reading


15-year-old girl forced to marry 32-year-old man: The life of Bangladeshi child brides can be full of violence and abuse Watch

Image of

By Nikky Andres (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Weddings are supposed to be one of the most memorable moments in a woman's lifetime. But for 15-year-old Nasoin Akhter it was nothing but loneliness. MUNTINLUPA, PHILIPPINES (Catholic Online) - Akhter was coerced into marriage with a 32-year-old man. In her wedding ... continue reading


Final Attack Operation: Kim Jong Un prepared North Korea military for battle Watch

Image of

By Talia Ramos (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Although the peninsula is technically still engaged in war, alarm and concern was raised in the region and other parts of the world after a report that North Korea's supreme leader Kim Jong Un convened with the country's senior party and defense officials. MUNTINLUPA, ... continue reading


Welcome to Beidaihe - the Chinese seaside resort town where leaders meet to plot world domination Watch

Image of The Chinese government's meetings in Beidaihe are never formally announced. The only clear indication that political and governmental activity is afoot is when soldiers of the People's Liberation Army appear on the streets.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Known for its gentle ocean breezes, seafood, beaches, and fun activities, the Chinese seaside resort town of Beidaihe is very popular with tourists. Families and young people gather there in the summer months for fun in the sun. Bedidaihe is also very popular with ... continue reading


Relations between China and the Holy See move forward with recognition of seminary studies, students Watch

Image of Diplomatic relations between the Holy See and China were cut in 1951, two years after the Chinese Communist party seized power.

By Andrea Gagliarducci, CNA/EWTN News

In a tiny victory for Vatican-Chinese rapprochement, China's government now recognizes seminary studies and allows seminarians to continue their education in a state university should they leave. Vatican City (CNA/EWTN News) - The Bachelor of Arts diploma young ... continue reading


All Asia Pacific News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, First Thessalonians 5:1-6, 9-11
1 About times and dates, brothers, there is no need ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for September 1st, 2015 Image

St. Giles, Abbot
September 1: St. Giles, Abbot (Patron of Physically Disabled) Feast day - ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter