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HIV/AIDS Rates on the Rise in North Bali

Woman and Children among Victims in Latest Tally of HIV/AIDS Victim in Buleleng Regency.

(11/1/2008) Beritabali.com reports that the rate of HIV/AIDS infection is on the increase in the Buleleng regency of North Bali. The local committee for the prevention of AIDS in that region recorded 120 local citizens were infected during the period January-September 2008. These new cases bring to 492 the number of known cases of HIV/AIDS recorded in Buleleng since the year 2000.

The majority of those infected are from the "productive age group" of 20-29 years, with an alarming increase in the number of women and children now known to be infected. Despite education and medical interventions to reduce the number of new cases, local officials admit that they are being overwhelmed with new cases, fearing the known cases represent only "the tip of the iceberg" of the actual level of infections across North Bali.

Officials report that the majority of HIV/AIDS cases in Buleleng are traced to individuals having sex with commercial sex workers or multiple sexual partners followed by intravenous drug users sharing non-sterilized syringes.