Sat, Oct 15, 2016 - Page 3 News List

Almost 20% of 18 to 25-year-olds risk HIV infection

Staff writer, with CNA

Approximately 20 percent of young Taiwanese have had sex with strangers or people they do not remember, exposing themselves to the risk of HIV infection, according to a survey released yesterday by the Taiwan AIDS Society.

The survey found that 77 percent of young people engage in sexual activity while on vacation.

While 19.4 percent have had sex with someone other than their partner, 8.7 percent have had sex with someone they met the same day and 10.1 percent do not remember with whom they had sex, while 51.7 percent did not use a condom.

The survey was conducted between late last month and Tuesday last week among 1,036 people aged 18 to 25 in Taipei, New Taipei City, Taoyuan, Taichung, Tainan and Kaohsiung.

Taiwan AIDS Society president Lin Hsi-hsun (林錫勳) said the number of people in the nation known to have HIV exceeded 33,000 last month, of which 50 percent were under 30.

As many as 95 percent of those with HIV had contracted the virus via sexual activity, he said, adding that failing to use a condom and having sex with someone without knowing if they have HIV is considered “dangerous sexual behavior.”

He advised people who have had sex with strangers without using a condom to get tested for HIV every three months to six months.

He said people should not be afraid if they have contracted HIV, because drugs are now available to control the virus and patients live to 70 years old on average.

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