Women, Children and HIV/AIDS in East Asia and the Pacific

Publications - Released in 2005

An estimated 1,700 children under the age of 15 are infected by HIV around the globe everyday. Many of these are young children, infected at birth by mothers who are unaware of their HIV status. The number continues to rise as more women are infected by partners who adopt high risk behaviours such as injecting drugs, buying sex, and having multiple sexual partners.

One recognizable pattern of HIV transmission starts with sudden increases among groups that practice high-risk behaviours, following which the epidemic spreads to the general population. This pattern has been seen in parts of East Asia and the Pacific. Sex workers, their clients and/or injecting drug users no longer form the bulk of new infections in countries such as Thailand, Myanmar, Cambodia, and parts of Viet Nam and China. The epidemic profile is shifting towards wives infected by their husbands who are often their only sexual partners.


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  • United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF)