Hong Kong Reports Record Increase in Number of HIV Cases; Largest Increase Among MSM
Hong Kong in the third quarter of this year reported the largest increase in the number of HIV cases ever recorded, with a large increase in the number of cases among men who have sex with men, according to official data released on Wednesday, Agence France-Presse reports. Hong Kong's Department of Health recorded 91 cases of HIV during the three-month period -- a 29% increase over the second quarter (Agence France-Presse, 11/16). Thirty-six of the new cases were attributed to homosexual or bisexual sexual activity, compared with 22 in the last quarter. Wong Ka-hing, a consultant for the Center for Health Protection, said, "This rising trend is very worrisome. The intervention, the awareness activities have to be strengthened" (Associated Press, 11/16). Twenty-eight new HIV cases were attributed to heterosexual sexual contact, which is the same number as last quarter (Agence France-Press, 11/16). Although HIV case reporting is voluntary, Wong said he believes the numbers reflect the current trends (Associated Press, 11/16). Since 1984, Hong Kong has recorded 2,738 cases of HIV, with 78% of cases attributable to sexual contact and 4% associated with injection drug use. The health department also recorded 17 new cases of AIDS in the third quarter, bringing the total number of AIDS cases in Hong Kong to 760 (Xinhuanet, 11/16).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.