Report: 24,500 HIV/AIDS Patients in Myanmar Lack Antiretroviral Drugs
June 8, 2005
On Tuesday, the Flower News journal reported that Dr. Sit Naing, a local representative of UNAIDS, said thousands of HIV/AIDS patients in Myanmar lack access to antiretrovirals because of a funding shortage. Myanmar's health department can offer the drugs to only about 500 of the 25,000 patients who need them, the report said.
The average monthly cost of the drugs is about 30,000 kyats ($30 US) per patient. Sit said the World Health Organization and other agencies have provided assistance for the treatment, but more funding is needed. The report did not specify an exact amount.
Myanmar's military government says more than 300,000 of the country's 54 million people have HIV/AIDS, but UNAIDS estimates more than 600,000 people ages 15-49 are infected. The Central Intelligence Agency estimates Myanmar's population at about 43 million, a figure that takes into account AIDS-related deaths.
The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria has pledged $19.2 million to combat HIV/AIDS in Myanmar, out of a total package of $36.5 million for the nation.
This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.