Tuesday, August 14, 2001

Jason Gerald

Malaysia: "15 deaths everyday to HIV, Aids, says Health Ministry"

KUALA ROMPIN, Sun. — Deaths due to HIV and Aids have been increasing steadily in the past 10 years with the latest figure standing at about 15 people dying everyday in the country.

As for the number of people suffering from HIV and Aids, the number has increased up to 40,049, until end of April, this year.

However, what is raising the fear is that 40 per cent of the HIV and Aids victims are youths aged between 13 and 29 and they were in the group which was exposed to various social ills.

Health Minister Datuk Chua Jui Meng said in 1990 there were only 10 people dying of HIV and Aids cases but the number steadily increased in 10 years and last year there were 882 deaths reported in the country.

"According to the statistics obtained from the health department throughout the country there were only 778 HIV and Aids cases identified in 1990 but the figure increased up to 5,100 cases, last year.

"Statistics also showed that most number of HIV and Aids cases in the country had increased due to the increase in drug addiction and also free sex amongst youths," he said.

Chua told this to reporters after closing the State-lever Program Sihat Tanpa Aids Untuk Remaja (Prostar) Convention at the Rompin Beach Resort, here today.

He added that the Ministry had spent RM6.8 million for the Prostar programme throughout the country since 1996 which has to date benefited some 500,000 youths.

"Besides being only involved in creating an awareness amongst youths on the danger of HIV and Aids, I hope that the Prostar supreme council would send proposals to the Ministry as to include other social ills, he said.

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Created: August 26, 2001
Last modified: August 26, 2001
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