Chinese Premier Wen Spends Lunar New Year With HIV-Positive People
February 9, 2005
Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao on Wednesday spent the Lunar New Year with HIV-positive people in the country's Henan province, where many of farmers in the early and mid-1990s contracted the virus through unsafe blood collection procedures, Agence France Presse reports (Agence France Presse, 2/9). The government-sponsored blood collection program paid farmers for their blood and sold it at state hospitals and private clinics. The Chinese government estimates that there are 840,000 HIV-positive people in the country and that 80,000 people have AIDS; however, the United Nations estimates that there are at least one million HIV-positive people in China. More than 500,000 officials and specialists in July 2004 began a survey project that aims to reach more than one million people in 18 cities and 35 counties in Henan to determine the number HIV-positive people in the province (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 9/14/04).
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