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New HIV Cases Hit Record High in Hong Kong

There were 435 new HIV cases in Hong Kong in 2008, which is the highest recorded, Hong Kong Center for Health Protection said on Tuesday, adding that the figure was 5 percent higher than in 2007.

Center for Health Protection Consultant Wong Ka–hing said sexual transmission continued to be the major mode of HIV spread.

Of the new cases, 131 people acquired the infection through heterosexual exposure, and 145 cases through homosexual or bisexual contact. Forty were cases of injection drug use and three were cases of blood or blood product infusion. The routes of transmission of 116 cases were undetermined due to inadequate information.

In the fourth quarter of 2008, 106 people tested positive for HIV, bringing the cumulative total of reported HIV infections to 4,047 since 1984.

The 106 new cases comprised 85 men and 21 women. Of them 24 acquired the infection through heterosexual contact, 40 through homosexual or bisexual contact and six through drug injection. The routes of transmission of the remaining 36 cases were undetermined due to inadequate information.

Thirty–two new cases of AIDS were reported in the fourth quarter in Hong Kong, bringing to 1,030 the total number of confirmed AIDS cases reported since 1985. Fifty–nine percent of the new AIDS cases were related to heterosexual contact.

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