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Officially Reported AIDS Cases Rise
- Subject: Officially Reported AIDS Cases Rise
- From: ausgeo@xxxxxxx
- Date: Mon, 07 Jul 1997 06:47:00
Subject: Officially Reported AIDS Cases Rise 18 Percent
Friday July 4
Officially Reported AIDS Cases Rise 18 Percent
By Stephanie Nebehay
GENEVA (Reuter) - Nearly 1.65 million people have been officially reported as
having contracted AIDS since the start of the pandemic, an increase of 18
percent from a year ago, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said on Friday.
But the United Nations agency estimated the true cumulative number of victims
of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) in 16 years was closer to 8.4
million at the end of last year.
The Geneva-based WHO issued its global figure on the basis of reports from the
health ministries of its 191 member states.
"As of 30 June 1997, a cumulative total of 1,644,183 AIDS cases in adults and
children had been reported to WHO since the onset of the pandemic," WHO said
in a weekly bulletin.
This compared with an annual rise of 19 percent recorded at the end of June
1996, according to WHO officials.
But it was not clear whether the one point drop in the annual global rise was
attributable to better prevention, new treatments slowing the onset of AIDS in
people with the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) or delays in states
In the United States last month, a federal task force recommended an
aggressive three-drug blend as the most effective therapy for people living
with the AIDS virus.
At the end of 1996 the WHO estimated the number of people infected with the
HIV virus at 30 million and the number to have died from AIDS at 6.4 million.
The United States reported the largest number of AIDS cases, 581,429, followed
by Brazil with 103,262, Tanzania with 82,174 Thailand with 59,782 and France
with 45,395, according to WHO.
In Africa-where 1,000 children are estimated to be infected every day-three
more countries in addition to Tanzania reported more than 50,000 cases. They
are Kenya, Zimbabwe, and Uganda, followed closely by Malawi and Zambia.
However, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, plagued by fighting, has not
reported AIDS figures in more than a year and its toll has surely risen from
29,434. Neighbouring Rwanda, with 10,706 known cases, has not reported
official figures in four years-while Congo's toll has stood at 10,223 for a
In Asia, no country besides Thailand has reported AIDS victims in the tens of
thousands. The closest are India with nearly 3,000, Burma with 1,822 and Japan
In Europe, France has the highest number of reported cases at 45,395, slightly
surpassing Spain at 45,132. Italy follows with 38,418, while Germany reported
16,138 and Britain 14,082.
Brazil's rate of 103,262 far exceeds those of other states of Latin America,
with only Mexico (29,962) and Argentina (10,461) reporting victims numbering
in the tens of thousands.
Canada has officially reported 14,836 AIDS cases while Australia reported
AIDS was first recognised in 1981 among American homosexual men. Two years
later, HIV was identified.