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Malaysia expected to achieve Millennium Development Goals
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12:46, October 02, 2007

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Malaysia is expected to achieve the Millennium Development Goals on HIV/AIDS after the government's programs to reduce the spread of the disease have begun to yield positive results, deputy prime minister Najib Tun Razak said in Putrajaya, the administrative center of Malaysia on Monday.

The long-term effects of the methadone replacement therapy, exchange of syringes and anti-rectroviral treatment programs were expected to be seen by 2010, he said after chairing a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on AIDS.

"If this is achieved, Malaysia is expected to achieve the Millennium Development Goals in three target areas, namely reducing child and maternal mortality and the spread of HIV," the national news agency Bernama quoted Najib as saying.

The methadone replacement therapy program would be extended to 25,000 HIV sufferers by 2010, from 5,000 people under the program this year, the deputy prime minister said.

The program had enabled 66 percent of HIV carriers to hold down permanent jobs and 24 percent to do general work after 12 months of treatment, he said.

A total of 76,389 HIV/AIDS cases were detected in the country last year.

Of the 5,800 new cases detected last year, 32 percent contracted the disease through sex.

HIV screening detected 15.6 percent of the HIV carriers in the drug rehabilitation centers, 5.3 percent in prisons and 8.9 percent in tuberculosis (TB) centers while 0.13 percent were detected through pre-nuptial tests and 0.03 percent involved pregnant mothers, according to him.

Source: Xinhua

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