The Shenzhen City Centre for Disease Control and Prevention has released the city’s HIV/AIDS statistics to mark World AIDS Day, and it doesn’t paint a pretty picture. While only four expatriates were diagnosed with HIV over the past year, overall numbers are up “significantly”.
The Shenzhen Daily has the details:
The center reported 957 HIV carriers in the first 10 months of the year, 24.9 percent more than the same period last year. Of these, 266 were AIDS patients, 90 percent more than a year ago. Nine of these had since died, four more than last year, the report said. Thirty-three percent of the HIV carriers were male homosexuals.
By Oct. 31, there had been 6,035 HIV carriers reported, 1,508 of whom were AIDS patients while 203 had died. CDC specialists said there could be 6,200 HIV carriers in the city, similar to last year’s estimate.
The main route of infection has shifted from drug addicts sharing needles to sexual intercourse.
More than 84 percent were infected through sexual intercourse while only about 11 percent were the result of shared needles. Last year about 70 percent were infected through sex.
The four expatriates were from Norway, Nigeria, Britain and Thailand.
With prostitution rampant in many parts of China, educating sex workers and their clients is becoming a top priority. The report even names particular districts in Shenzhen where the risk is higher: Longgang and Bao’an, in particular, because of their large migrant populations, and Luohu because of its seedy “entertainment” area.
It’s expected there are 780,000 HIV carriers in China.