HIV/AIDS

Country profiles on HIV/AIDS

Lao PDR


The HIV situation in Lao People's Democratic Republic is considered unique being the only country in the Greater Mekong River (GMR) with a continuing low prevalence close to 0.2-0.3% in the adult population. The number of people living with HIV in 2012 is estimated at 12,000, but the trend suggests prevalence will increase in future. The main mode of transmission is heterosexual. Historically high-risk has been linked to the "three Ms"—men, mobility and money— typical of the spread of HIV in GMR. Moreover, HIV linked to drug use has been recently identified in the country.

Lao People's Democratic Republic continues to include HIV in national policy priorities, expand the involvement of people living with HIV (PLHIV) networks in decision making, and develop multisectoral monitoring under a five-year strategic plan. Efforts have been made to expand HIV treatment and care. A rising number of new cases reported among people who inject drugs and men who have sex with men may soon challenge the current equilibrium of the HIV epidemic picture of the country.

Core HIV and AIDS epidemic and response data

Indicator 2001 2007 2011 2012
No. PLHIV
Total 3 300 8 400 11 000 12 000
Adults 3 200 7 900 10 000 11 000
Adult prev. % 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.3
Women (15+) 1 400 3 700 4 700 4 900
Children < 15 years
No. new infection
AIDS related deaths <100 <500 <500 <500
% HIV key populations
PWID (% HIV)
FSW (% HIV) 1.1 1
MSM (% HIV) 5.6
No. people on ART
Total 700 1 988 2 375
ART coverage (%) 52.3 (a) 55.4 (a)
No. paediatric patients on ART 163
No. receiving ARV for PMTCT 24 49 49
PMTCT coverage (%) 14.6 (a) 16.4 (a)

(a) Country reported.

Source:

WHO/UNAIDS estimates 2013, and GARPR reporting 2012-2013.