Number of New HIV Cases Among Women in Taiwan Nearly Doubled From 2004 to 2005, Legislator Says
The number of new HIV cases among women in Taiwan nearly doubled from 2004 to 2005, Huang Sue-ying, a legislator with the country's Democratic Progressive Party, said at a conference on Saturday, adding that the government needs to do more to consider women in its HIV prevention and testing programs, Taiwan's Taipei Times reports. According to Huang, 874 of the 10,158 new HIV cases in 2005 were women, compared with 469 of 6,762 new cases in 2004. Huang said the number of men tested for the virus is seven times the number of women tested, in part because the country's Department of Health aims its voluntary HIV-testing program primarily at men who have sex with commercial sex workers or men who have sex with men. Men also are tested for the virus as part of the required health exams to enter the military. He added that symptoms of HIV shown by women might be different than those shown by men, and the "government does not consider these factors when devising AIDS-prevention policies." Hsu Chao-chun, deputy director of the third division at the country's Center for Disease Control, said the country's HIV/AIDS prevention policies are in need of reform, adding that the center will work with doctors and local health departments to improve HIV/AIDS education (Lin, Taipei Times, 1/8).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.