Developed Asia Network formed to address HIV-related needs of MSM and transgender people

Published: December 7, 2010

Delegates from Hong Kong and Macau, Japan, Singapore, South Korea and Taiwan voted unanimously last Friday to form a regional network to address similar epidemiological profiles, namely rapidly rising HIV and other STI infection rates amongst MSM and transgender people, among other commonalities.

The following is a press statement issued by Developed Asia Sexual Diversity Network (DAN) Working Group on Dec 7:

Delegates from Hong Kong and Macau, Japan, Singapore, South Korea and Taiwan voted unanimously last Friday to form a regional network to address similar epidemiological profiles, namely rapidly rising HIV and other STI infection rates amongst MSM and transgender people, among other commonalities.

At the landmark inaugural Developed Asia Regional Consultation on HIV in MSM (men who have sex with men) and transgender people held on Dec 2 and 3, each country or territory nominated two representatives to form a working group tasked to steer the formation of the network, to be called the Developed Asia Sexual Diversity Network (DAN). It expects to collaborate on research, sharing of good practices, and policy advocacy among other aims.

Seventy delegates including health sector and United Nations officials, researchers, and community representatives representing 40 organisations from the region including Malaysia, Thailand and China discussed a broad range of topics including resource mobilisation, living with HIV, and dealing effectively with the emerging trends of drug use through harm reduction strategies. The conference also heard that young MSM and transgenders are at particularly high risk because existing prevention messaging is not reaching them.

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