Alarming new statistics indicate that China is facing an epidemic of HIV/AIDS, a Chinese health official revealed recently in Beijing.
Reported new infections increased 67.4% in the first 6 months of 2001 compared with the same period the previous year, said Deputy Health Minister Yin Dakui. Also, the rate of infection among injection drug users has increased more than 10-fold since 1995, from less than 0.5% to about 5%.
Some observers suggested that the press conference—the first in which a top Chinese official has openly addressed the issue—signaled a new readiness by the Chinese government to confront the growing epidemic there.
Stephenson J. HIV/AIDS in China. JAMA. 2001;286(14):1704. doi:10.1001/jama.286.14.1704-JWM10010-3-1