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Việt Nam to host regional reproductive and sexual health conference

Update: June, 02/2017 - 17:12
Members of the organising committee chair press conference. – VNS Photo Khánh Dương
Viet Nam News

HÀ NỘI – Việt Nam will host the Asia Pacific Conference on Reproductive and Sexual Health and Rights (APCRSHR) for the first time this November.

The information was announced at a press conference on June 2.

The 9th APCRSHR, from November 27 to 30 this year, will be organised by the Việt Nam Public Health Association (VPHA) in Hạ Long City, northern Quảng Ninh Province.

Professor Lê Vũ Anh, VPHA president and head of APCRSHR’s organising committee, said this would be the largest regional conference on reproductive and sexual health that Việt Nam has hosted so far, with the participation of some 1,500 delegates from over 40 countries.

The conference is themed Leave No One Behind! Justice in Sexual and Reproductive Health and is targeted at achieving the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals.

According to the organising committee, the Asia-Pacific region is an area of rapid growth and transition. The benefits and costs of development are, however, not shared equitably among the countries and peoples of the region. In health, particularly in sexual and reproductive health, the poor and marginalised communities miss out on good quality treatment and services.

Hoàng Tú Anh, director of the Centre for Creative Initiatives in Health and Population, said vulnerable groups that may be left behind are the disabled, migrants and LGBT, in terms of the right to access services and be recognised.

“The Vietnamese Government has not legalised the sex worker’ profession, which increases the risks for this group. This conference is an opportunity for Việt Nam to learn from other countries’ experience about this issue,” she said.

During the four-day event, scientists, practitioners, researchers and lecturers, as well as advocators, community groups and the youth will discuss pressing regional social issues in the context of culture, religion, policies, healthcare system and education.

Topics to be discussed include overcoming social, cultural and religious barriers in sexual and reproductive health; towards a just economic order for sexual and reproductive health; and making good quality sexual and reproductive health education available to all.

The first day will be spent on a youth conference, gathering some 400 young participants who will hold talks with experts to solve youth-related problems on reproductive and sexual health and rights.

The biannual APCRSHR initiated by civic society organisations has been held eight times previously in the Philippines, Thailand, India and Malaysia, as well as Indonesia and Myanmar. – VNS



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