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Rising HIV carriers in Xinjiang spark concern
20/10/2006 9:42

Northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region reported 16,035 HIV carriers at the end of June, a rise of 4,732 in just nine months, the local disease control center said.

The region reported 11,303 HIV carriers at the end of September last year, according to the regional center. The new cases were found in 15 prefectures and cities, including the regional capital, Urumqi.

In June, Xinjiang had 563 reported AIDS cases, including 105 deaths. The region reported 213 AIDS patients from the beginning of 2001 to June last year, including 54 deaths.

Hao Yang, deputy head of the disease prevention and control bureau of the Ministry of Health, said HIV infection was severe in Xinjiang, calling on local governments and medical departments to make concerted efforts to curb the spread of the disease.

Hao said AIDS was spreading from high-risk groups, such as prostitutes, to ordinary groups, including pregnant women, most of whom were infected by their husbands who contracted HIV through drug use.

Clinical monitoring showed the incidence of HIV infection among women lying-in was up to one percent in Xinjiang's Yili area, while the average was 0.3 percent, said Ni Mingjian, head of the regional venereal disease and HIV/AIDS department of the disease control center.