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China Sets up Data Bank for AIDS Patients

A nationwide data bank on all known HIV carriers and AIDS patients is expected to be established by the end of this year, with each HIV/AIDS patient having an individual file, sources with China's Center of Disease Prevention and Control (CDC) said Saturday.  

"The move aims at making more accurate assessment of the AIDS epidemic in the country and providing timely and effective medical treatment to HIV carriers and AIDS patients," according to an official with the Venereal and Aids Disease Prevention and Control Center under the CDC.


AIDS testing centers around China have reported that some of the testees just disappeared after being informed that they were HIV positive and, without detailed personal information, follow-up monitoring and treatment would become extremely difficult.


The Ministry of Health has confirmed that incomplete statistics on HIV carriers and AIDS victims have impeded efforts on further study and treatment of this deadly contagious disease.


"The introduction of a comprehensive data bank will help dramatically improve this situation," said the official with the Venereal and Aids Disease Prevention and Control Center. "it will also provide policy-making basis for analyzing AIDS spreading trends, optimizing AIDS control resources and appraising treatment results."


According to experts, the data bank will include more than 10 items concerning personal information, including ID card number, blood type, etc. County level centers for disease prevention and control will be held responsible for confirming information of each known HIV carrier and AIDS patient, and conducting follow-up monitoring.


Since the first detection of an HIV case in 1985, there are approximately 840,000 HIV carriers now in China, including 80,000 AIDS patients.


(Xinhua News Agency June 6, 2004)

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