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Govt to Publish Updated Estimates of AIDS/HIV

China will publish the updated estimates of AID/HIV epidemic soon, said Mao Qun'an, the spokesman for the Ministry of Health (MOH), Tuesday.

"Last year, the MOH, the United Nations Aids Program (UNAIDS) and the Worlds Health Organization (WHO) jointly estimated China's AIDS epidemic, and the three parts are now making a final appraisal of the estimates," he said.

"The updated estimates are expected to be announced soon jointly by the three parts," he added.

According to the estimates jointly published by the MOH and the UNAIDS work group in 2003, China had about 840,000 HIV carriers and nearly 80,000 AIDS patients.

The Chinese government increased its spending on AIDS prevention work to 800 million yuan (US$99.10 million) in 2005 from 100 million yuan (US$12.39 million) in 2002.

By the end of 2004, China had set up 247 country-level AIDS surveillance stations while the disease prevention and control institutions at all levels had establish special working groups for AIDS prevention.

Health minister Gao Qiang said earlier that China will keep the number of HIV-positive people below 1.5 million by 2010.

(Xinhua News Agency January 11, 2006)

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