Men who have sex with men in Viet Nam are at disproportionately high risk of HIV transmission. Research suggests that this is due in large part to multiple sexual partners, low condom use and low perceptions of risk. Not all MSM are at equal risk, however. HIV prevalence among MSM was found to be significantly higher in cities than in rural areas.
In 2006, a revised law on HIV passed by the Viet Nam National Assembly listed ‘homosexual people’ among the high risk groups prioritized for HIV prevention programming. This represented the first time that MSM were recognized by the government of Viet Nam. However, funding for HIV services targeting MSM comes almost exclusively from donor programmes. As donors reduce their support to Viet Nam in the coming years, it will be critical for domestically funded programmes to target MSM as a population at high risk of HIV.