Online tools for educating young people about HIV / AIDS prevention should be used, public health experts said on November 24, as young people make up a significant share of new infections each year.
Citing figures from a United Nations report released in July, Oo Kai, a spokesman for the Chinese office of the United Nations Joint Program on HIV / AIDS, said people aged 15 to 24 accounted for 34% of last year’s 1.7 million people newly infected with HIV worldwide.
There were about 38 million people living with HIV last year, including 10% of the young population, ou said at an event in Beijing organized by the China Foundation for the Prevention of STDs and AIDS and the Danlan Public Interest Fund, ahead of the 33rd World AIDS Day. , which will be held on December 1.
According to official data, in 2018 China reported about 145,000 new cases of HIV / AIDS, but only about 3,000 cases or 2% were among students aged 15 to 24 years.
Wu Zunyu, chief epidemiologist at the China Center for Disease Control and Prevention, estimates that the number of new HIV infections reported in students aged 15 to 24 is expected to remain around 3,000 this year. However, he noted that more than 10,000 young people are expected to be infected with the virus across society each year.
The number of reported new HIV infections among students aged 15 to 24 has increased from 482 in 2008 to 3,077 in 2017 and has since remained at around 3,000 per year. Public health experts say infections on campus are mainly linked to poor knowledge of HIV risk and appropriate safeguards.
For his part, Wu added that AIDS has been the leading cause of death from infectious diseases in China since 2008. The figures show that nearly 21,000 people died of AIDS last year, or about 83% of deaths. attributed to infectious diseases.
“This year, HIV-related deaths will be much higher (in China) than lives lost to KOVID-19 infections,” Wu said, adding that more effort was needed. using the Internet to promote HIV prevention. He also stressed the need to strengthen co-operation between the public and private sectors.