HIV carriers in China may have a chance to become civil servants under a new health standard for recruitment.
The Ministry of Personnel and the Ministry of Health are now seeking public opinions on the second draft of a health standard that would allow HIV carriers - although not AIDS patients - to be appointed to civil service positions.
HIV carriers are people infected with the deadly virus who have not developed full-blown AIDS.
The draft is available on both ministries' websites. Opinions will be collected between November 15 and 25.
This is the second time that public opinion on the health standard has been sought.
In early August, the two ministries released the first draft and in September, expert commentary was sought on the public opinions collected.
One of the noticeable changes between the first and second drafts is the removal of HIV carriers from the list of people unqualified for public service.
Xu Keyi, an HIV/AIDS expert with the Ditan Hospital in Beijing, said allowing HIV carriers in the civil service is great progress, the Beijing Morning Post reported yesterday.
Hepatitis B carriers are already considered qualified, Xu added.
(China Daily November 20, 2004)