Southeast Asian Health Officials To Meet in New Delhi To Examine HIV/AIDS, Other Health Issues
Health ministers and other officials from 11 Southeast Asian countries will meet on Monday in New Delhi for the World Health Organization's 61st Session of the Regional Committee for Southeast Asia, IANS/New Kerala reports. During the meeting, officials will examine HIV/AIDS issues in the region, as well as other health topics. An estimated 3.6 million people in Southeast Asia are living with HIV/AIDS, and approximately 260,000 new HIV cases and 300,000 AIDS-related deaths occurred in the region in 2007. Countries taking part in the meeting are Bangladesh, Bhutan, East Timor, India, Indonesia, Maldives, Myanmar, Nepal, North Korea, Sri Lanka and Thailand.
According to IANS/New Kerala, the groups most affected by HIV/AIDS in the region are commercial sex workers and their clients, injection drug users and men who have sex with men. Other issues expected to be examined at the meeting are universal access to primary health care, vector-borne diseases such as malaria, maternal and infant mortality, and tobacco use. Officials such as WHO Regional Director Samlee Pilanbangchang and Indian Health Minister Anbumani Ramadoss are scheduled to attend the meeting (IANS/New Kerala, 9/6).