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Free condoms refused in Vietnam

Friday, May 31, 2013, 10:01 GMT+7
Free condoms refused in Vietnam

Many people in Vietnam refuse to use condoms which are funded by a global fund to fight HIV-AIDS because of their poor quality, according to a recent report by Lao Dong (Laborer) Newspaper.  

Dang Thi Thuy Huong, co-coordinator of the Institute for Social Development Studies, told Lao Dong that some users in northern cities and provinces like Hanoi, Vinh Phuc, and Hai Duong have complained that Happy condoms are inadequately lubricated, thick, and too big.

A volunteer for a local organization in HIV prevention named “Cung Tien” (Go Ahead Together) said that some people have refused to take the condoms, some took them but threw them away, and some have even scolded the volunteers when they offer the condoms.

Other volunteers said this is the first time a type of condom has been criticized by local users.

“Some global organizations encourage people in remote areas and those with high risk of HIV infection to use condoms to prevent HIV by offering them free condoms. However, if they refuse to receive condoms [which are not good enough], efforts to prevent HIV will be negatively affected,” said Pham Hoai Thanh, deputy director of the Center for Supporting Community Development Initiatives (SCDI), based in Hanoi.

Professor Bui Duc Duong, director of The Global Fund in Vietnam, under the management of the Ministry of Health, told Lao Dong that they have yet to receive any comments about the quality of Happy condoms from local users.

However, he added, in case they receive negative feedback from users, they cannot return the condoms to the providers or replace them with another kind of condom.

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