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February 17, 2019

Public and private health providers, police discuss tackling drug addiction

Permanent secretary Dr. Thet Khaing Win addresses the coordination meeting on safeguarding and rehabilitating drug addiction held in Nay Pyi Taw yesterday. Photo: MNA
Permanent secretary Dr. Thet Khaing Win addresses the coordination meeting on safeguarding and rehabilitating drug addiction held in Nay Pyi Taw yesterday. Photo: MNA

A coordination meeting on safeguarding and rehabilitating drug addiction was held at Mingalar Thiri Hotel in Nay Pyi Taw yesterday.
The meeting was opened with a speech from the permanent secretary Dr. Thet Khaing Win from the Ministry of Health and Sports (MoHS). He said his ministry leads the medical treatment working group of the Body for the Prevention of the Danger of Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances. He said they have established 26 Major Drug Addiction Treatment Centres, 47 Minor Drug Addiction Treatment Centres, and 55 methadone clinics that are providing continued services.
The permanent secretary said drug addiction shares many similarities with other chronic illnesses and brings numerous physical, mental, and social consequences. He said this calls for increased drug addiction treatment and rehabilitation efforts. He said drug addiction is usually stigmatized rather then viewed as a health problem and this creates obstacles in providing or receiving treatment and other services.
Attending the meeting were Deputy Minister for Health and Sports Dr. Mya Lay Sein, directors-general, deputy directors-general, directors, heads of public health departments and medical services departments from states and regions, Medical Superintendents of hospitals, professors and medical specialists, and officials from Myanmar Police Force and the Rehabilitation Department under MoHS.
The two-day coordination meeting began yesterday and will conclude today. Attendees will discuss current processes of drug treatment departments, projects to support opening of drug treatment and rehabilitation centres in Shan State, the current status, challenges, ways forward and strategic key points of drug treatment departments in Yangon, Mandalay and Sagaing regions and Kachin and Shan states, designing a national strategic framework based on the new National Drug Control Policy, and implementing strategies moving forward. —MNA (Translated by Zaw Htet Oo)

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