Shanghai Daily News, Six-year effort against AIDS notes impact
A SINO-BRITISH AIDS prevention project has concluded its six-year mission in southwest China's Yunnan and Sichuan provinces, promoting condom use among female sex workers and reducing the syringe sharing by drug users.
At a meeting held by the Ministry of Health and the British Embassy in China on Thursday, officials said the project distributed 4.2 million condoms and 1.28 million disposable syringes, and collected 1.14 million used needles.
A total of 129,000 high-risk and vulnerable groups in 83 counties in the two provinces were targeted by the project - the China-UK HIV/AIDS Prevention and Care Project - including people living with HIV/AIDS, injection drug users, women sex workers, men who have sex with men and people who visit prostitutes.
Launched in June 2000 with funds from Britain, the project helped Yunnan and Sichuan set up 57 volunteer community teams and provided care and support to 4,531 people infected with HIV and AIDS. Volunteers raised AIDS awareness among 46,702 women sex workers.
The project has achieved its targets, according to experts from the China Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
A new round of the project will soon begin in seven Chinese provinces, with 30 million pounds (US$57 million) provided by Britain, officials said at the meeting.
China has approximately 650,000 people infected with HIV, including 75,000 AIDS patients, according to official estimates.
Amazingly China knows they have exactly 46,702 women sex workers in Yunnan and Sichuan. In addition, I am surprised that the Chinese cannot take on a project like this without help from the British. They are sitting on an ocean of trade dollars. I guess if the West is stupid enough to hand out the money there will always be those eager to receive donations.
Back in January of this year the Chinese had revised the number of AIDS cases downward even though they were adding 70,000 new HIV-AIDS cases a year. About 25,000 people died of HIV-AIDS last year, according to a study by UNAIDS, the World Health Organization, and China's health ministry. The number of HIV-AIDS sufferers in China was estimated at 650,000, which is lower than the 840,000 estimated by the UN in 2004.
Here we see the typical Chinese solution to make certain the incidence of AIDS remains low: