HA NOI — The Viet Nam Administration of HIV/AIDS Control plans to open 20 more methadone detoxification centres across the country this year, said director Pham Duc Manh at a conference on HIV/AIDS held recently in Ha Noi.
Once completed, Viet Nam will have 61 methadone centres with the capacity to treat approximately 15,000 drug addicts th is year.
Methadone medicine is currently imported by the Ministry of Health through a programme sponsored by the US President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief.
The ministry has imported more than 70,600 litres of the medicine thus far.
Methadone centres are forecast to provide treatment to 80,000 drug addicts by 2015.
"However, the US programme's coverage is limited and the ministry has found it difficult to find an alternate source of methadone since it is imported," said Manh.
Relevant bodies should join hands to carry out a methadone manufacture project and create jobs for patients being treated with methadone, he said.
According to the rector of the Ha Noi Medical University, unsafe drug injection was the main cause of HIV transmission in the country. — VNS