Survey Shows "Dangerous" AIDS Ignorance in China
August 4, 2006
A new Zogby International/MFC Insight Internet poll shows that Chinese city dwellers are largely ignorant about their risk of contracting HIV and thus may spread it to others. More than one-third of male survey participants said they frequent prostitutes. The survey also found that men and women rarely discussed HIV/AIDS with their partners.
The poll surveyed 3,753 adults ages 18-54 in March. About two-thirds were male; 45 percent were married. "The survey reveals some cause for concern, as respondents present a dangerous mixture of complacency and ignorance about sexually transmitted diseases (STDS), including HIV/AIDS," Zogby said in a statement.
The report called for better sex education in China, noting "a widespread lack of knowledge about behaviors that can lead to sexually transmitted disease transmission while 37 percent of men surveyed said that they patronize commercial sex workers. Only one-third of those surveyed 'always' discuss HIV/AIDS and other STDs with potential sex partners."
China reports 650,000 HIV/AIDS cases, half of them among intravenous drugs users. In other countries, the epidemic has moved from drug users into the general population through sexual transmission.
"Observers point to a dangerous intersection of intravenous drug use and paid sex in China that increases the risk of a more generalized epidemic," Zogby said. "Overall, survey respondents are more urban, wealthy, educated, and male than China's total population, but their responses provide some interesting insights into sexual behavior in the world's most populous nation."
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This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.