People Unaware of HIV/AIDS Status Could Hurt Preventive Efforts in West Pacific, WHO Says
About 1.3 million people, including 21,000 children, in the West Pacific region were living with HIV/AIDS in 2007, but "the majority of people living with HIV still do not know they are sick," the World Health Organization said in a release on Thursday, Xinhuanet reports. WHO said that the large number of people unaware of their HIV status could jeopardize efforts to fight the virus in the region, Xinhua News Agency reports. People who are unaware of their HIV status could be spreading the virus and do not have access to available services, according to WHO. WHO added that while programs to prevent HIV transmission are well established, the scale and coverage of those programs often are limited. WHO's governing body in the Western Pacific, the Regional Committee, is meeting in Manila, the Philippines, to evaluate the organization's work in the region (Xinhuanet, 9/25).This is part of the Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.