A majority of countries in the Southeast Asia implement some some form of harm reduction. However, many programmes lack government funding, are ill-equipped to meet demand, or fail to comply with UN standards. While most countries allow key harm reduction strategies, such as needle and syringe exchange programmes (NSPs) and opioid substitution therapy (OST), a harsh “war on drugs” method often prevails as the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) struggles with the “unrealistic hope” of a drug-free region by 2015
According to Harm Reduction International, a global NGO, more than 570,000 IDUs live across Southeast Asia. More than half of them come from Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam, which are listed by the UN as high priority with major HIV epidemics in IDU populations.
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