Proportion Of New HIV Cases Increasing Among Older Population In China

The case of a Chinese man nearly 80 years old who was recently diagnosed with HIV is “shedding light on a segment of the Chinese population said to be overlooked by the country’s AIDS education efforts,” according to “a recent report from state-run media Xinhua News Agency,” the Wall Street Journal’s “China Real Time” blog reports.

Xinhua cited data from the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention showing that this year, “14.9 percent of newly diagnosed HIV cases were over the age of 50, up from 7.8 percent a year earlier,” according to the blog. While “China has taken steps in recent years to improve HIV prevention …  the rise of HIV in the aging signals a major oversight in the country’s AIDS education and awareness programs, which have typically focused on younger generations, homosexuals, sex workers and migrant workers from rural regions, Xinhua said,” the blog notes. “Some experts say the rise in the aging population’s HIV rates can be attributed to a cheap commercial sex industry that attracts China’s older population, China Daily said,” according to the blog (Burkitt, 8/8).