China to Abolish Forced Isolation of AIDS Patients
April 6, 2004
Xinhua News Agency reported Friday that China's National People's Congress will amend a 15-year-old contagious disease prevention law to abolish the forced isolation of AIDS patients. Some 300 local and central government laws regulate AIDS prevention and control, including some that impose restrictions on employment, education, marriage rights and privacy for those with the disease. The amendment represents "an institutional start to eliminate the stigma and discrimination against HIV/AIDS patients" that help spread the disease, said one member of congress. Xinhua also repeated expert forecasts that cases of HIV in China would reach 10 million in 2010 "in the best case" scenario and possibly 20 million "if drastic actions were not immediately taken." A fundamental obstacle to China's HIV/AIDS fight is discrimination against people with the disease, said Koen Vanormelingen, chief of UNICEF's Health and Nutrition Department in China.
Agence France Presse
This article was provided by U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update. Visit the CDC's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.