‘Mr Condom’ spearheads fight against Thailand’s new AIDS crisis – smh.com.au, December 21, 2012
…At least one person becomes HIV-positive every hour in Thailand, joining more than a million Thais who have been infected since the first case was reported here in 1984.
The United Nations says Mechai’s campaign caused a decline of 90 per cent in new HIV infections over 12 years from 1991, which the World Bank estimates saved 7.7 million lives.
But the infection rate is again steadily rising, with 9470 new cases a year being reported, 80 per cent of them caused by unsafe sex.
About 62 per cent of the 464,414 people known to be infected with the virus in the country are male, the Thai Ministry of Health says.
Mechai warns that an estimated 250,000 Thais are unaware they are carrying the HIV virus. ”They are not going for testing and they are having sex around the place,” he says. ”Getting them to be tested should be a priority…”
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