A 13-year-old boy has become the youngest patient to contract HIV through sexual intercourse, health officials said.
It is suspected the boy became infected while working part-time for a 50-year-old male, who used money to lure him into having sex, Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Deputy Director-General Lin Ting (林頂) said.
The boy was visiting an adolescent center when he tested positive for HIV, Lin said, adding that the CDC had traced the source of -transmission to the older man.
Lin said young boys were referred to as “Sky Food,” or delicious food falling from the sky, by pedophiles on the Internet who seek ways of enticing boys either with money or other incentives.
Statistics compiled last year showed that the number of young people who have contracted HIV has continued to rise in Taiwan.
Compared with 2009, 13.3 percent more cases were diagnosed among those aged between 15 and 24, Lin said.
Lin said that sexual -encounters and intravenous drug use are the two most common routes of infection.
With the HIV/AIDS population in Taiwan standing at 20,057, 65.9 percent of those with the disease were infected by having unsafe sex and 32.2 percent through intravenous drug use, Lin said.
Saying that the most common way for HIV/AIDS to be contracted is through unsafe sex, the CDC has established health Web sites and homosexual centers in Hsinchu, Greater Taichung and Greater Kaohsiung to combat the trend.