250620 Taiwan's experience in fighting HIV/AIDS in vulnerable populations

Monday, October 31, 2011: 10:45 AM

Chin Hui Yang , Third Division, Centers for Disease Control, Taiwan, Taipei, NY, Taiwan
After the first case reported in 1984, the cumulative number of native HIV cases reached 18,378 by the end of 2009 in Taiwan. HIV/AIDS patients are provided with free medical care by the government in Taiwan, including HAART which was introduced on 1 April 1997. It was estimated that 84% of persons living with HIV (PLHIV) sought HIV-related care and 46.6% of them receiving HAART in 2009. The case fatality rate of AIDS cases declined from 64% in 1996 to 5% in 2009. The cumulative number of PLHIV increased annually accompanied with the growth of medical expense, which increased from 4.2 million USD in 1997 to 63.1 million USD in 2009. This expenditure is not included in national health insurance program, but budgeted by Taiwan CDC separately. According to the estimation, this policy reduced the rate of HIV transmission by 53% in Taiwan. Before 2004, the majority (>80%) of HIV infection occurred through sexual transmission. An HIV epidemic among injecting drug users (IDU) started since 2005, represented a 124% increase than previous year. To deal with the problem, we adopted a harm reduction program which consists of three main parts: needle-syringe program, drug substitution treatment, and health education program. The program successfully reversed the growing trend of newly reported HIV case number by the end of 2006. Besides, the program improved the quality of life of participating IDUs and further increased their employment rate. However, the impact of HIV/AIDS on social and economic aspects is still challenging in Taiwan.

Learning Areas:
Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Advocacy for health and health education

Learning Objectives:
Describe Taiwan’s policy for providing free medical care for HIV-infected persons, including HAART. Demonstrate how the harm reduction program has been implemented in Taiwan for dealing with HIV epidemic among injecting drug users.

Keywords: Intravenous Drug Use, HIV/AIDS

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Dr. Yang has been the Director of Third Division (HIV, TB and STD) in Taiwan CDC since 2008. She is responsible for the program of the national HIV/AIDS prevention and control in Taiwan. She is also a medical doctor majored on internal medicine and infectious diseases. Therefore, she is qualified to share Taiwan’s experience in fighting HIV/AIDS in different vulnerable population with participants.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.