The Beijing Health Bureau confirmed on Friday the death of a person in Beijing last week due to AIDS. About 3,142 HIV carriers and AIDS patients were living in the 18 districts and counties of Beijing according to Statistics from the Beijing Health bureau. Out of these, 313 cases were discovered in the first six months of the year.
According to Deputy Director of the Bureau's Disease Prevention and Control Department, Guan Baoying, the number of people living with HIV/AIDS has grown by an average of 40.6 percent each year in the Chinese capital since 1998.
The disease which first spread among drug abusers, sex workers and homosexuals has now started affecting the general population with most of the HIV carriers and AIDS patients aged between 20 and 49, the official said.
Drug abusers accounted for 36.7% of the people living with HIV/AIDS, while 34% had contracted it through sexual contact and the rest through blood transfusions and other causes.
The Beijing Health Bureau earlier in March this year had instructed all hotels to place condoms in their rooms, but Guan said only 60 out of the nearly 5,000 hotels in the city have done so. The official added that the city was also planning to open six methadone clinics this year to help drug abusers drop their habit in a bid to curb the spread of the disease.
Approximately 650,000 people in China were living with HIV including approximately 75,000 AIDS patients according to estimates by Officials and experts.
According to figures released by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Joint United Nations Program on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), a total of 30 million people worldwide have died from AIDS by the end of 2005, and the number people with HIV infections has exceeded 40 million.