TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iranian state television is reporting that the number of HIV-positive citizens in the country has skyrocketed over the last decade.
On Sunday, state television quoted Health Minister Hassan Ghzaizadeh as saying there has been a nine-fold growth in the number of HIV/AIDS patients in the decade.
Talking about the virus that causes AIDS was once longer taboo in the Islamic Republic. But in recent years, government officials in Iran have begun greater outreach and education about HIV and AIDS.
The report said the number of registered HIV-positive citizens is about 27,000, though estimates suggest there are some 100,000 people infected in Iran. It said a third of those infected said they got the virus through sexual intercourse, while the rest got it from using infected syringes.