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Cablegate: Japan's Annual Report On Hiv/Aids for 2006

VZCZCXRO2184
RR RUEHHM RUEHLN RUEHMA RUEHPB RUEHPOD
DE RUEHKO #4172/01 2500314
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 070314Z SEP 07 ZDK CITE MANY SVC'S PLS CLEAR UR LOGS
FM AMEMBASSY TOKYO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 7355
INFO RUEHZN/EST COLLECTIVE
RUEHOK/AMCONSUL OSAKA KOBE 6677
RUEHNH/AMCONSUL NAHA 5465
RUEHKSO/AMCONSUL SAPPORO 3778
RUEHNAG/AMCONSUL NAGOYA 2020
RUEHFK/AMCONSUL FUKUOKA 3041
RUEAUSA/DEPT OF HHS WASHINGTON DC

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 TOKYO 004172

SIPDIS

DEPT FOR EAP/J, OES/IHA AND S/GAC
DEPT PASS TO NIH/NIAID WESTERN
HHS FOR OGHA

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: TBIO SOCI KHIV AMED KSCA JA
SUBJECT: JAPAN'S ANNUAL REPORT ON HIV/AIDS FOR 2006


TOKYO 00004172 001.5 OF 002

1. Summary: According to Japan's Ministry of Health, Labor and
Welfare (MHLW) AIDS Surveillance Committee Annual Report on the
HIV/AIDS Epidemic for 2006, 952 new HIV-positive cases and 406 new
AIDS cases were reported in Japan during the year. These were
larger increases than reported in 2005. The cumulative number of
HIV and AIDS cases in Japan for the two decade period since the GOJ
started its national survey in 1984 has come to total 8,344 and
4,050 respectively. HIV has been spreading particularly among
Japanese males, with sexual contact as the major route of infection
for both HIV and AIDS.

2. As transmission through same-sex intercourse remained the major
HIV/AIDS infection route in 2006, the AIDS Surveillance Committee
again warned the government of the need to provide opportunities for
HIV/AIDS examinations in the early stage and to promote active
countermeasures to prevent further HIV infections in the homosexual
population. In addition to Tokyo and its surrounding prefectures,
other Japanese prefectures also reported an increase in the number
of HIV/AIDS cases. The Committee warned that local governments
should take appropriate actions to prevent HIV from further
spreading in their areas of responsibility. End summary.

---------------------------
HIV-positive Cases in 2006
---------------------------

3. The number of HIV-positive cases has trended upward in Japan
since 1996. In 2006, 952 new HIV-positive cases were reported, up
120 from the previous year. The total broke the prior record of 832
new cases reported in 2005. A total of 86.8 percent of the cases
were contracted through sexual contact -- 63.4 percent through
homosexual and 23.4 percent through heterosexual intercourse.
Japanese males accounted for 82.7 percent of the total number of
cases reported. The routes of infection for the remaining cases
were divided into the following categories: intravenous drug use
(0.4 percent), mother-to-child transmission (0.1 percent), unknown
(8.4 percent), and other (4.2 percent).

-------------------
AIDS Cases in 2006
-------------------

4. In 2006, 406 new AIDS cases with fully developed symptoms were
reported, up 39 cases from 2005. Japanese males accounted for 82.5
percent of the total number of AIDS cases reported and 74.9 percent
of the AIDS cases were contracted via sexual contact - 40.4 percent
through homosexual contact and 34.5 percent through heterosexual
intercourse. The remaining cases were divided among the following
categories: intravenous drug use (0.7 percent), mother-to-child
transmission (0.0 percent), unknown (20.7 percent), and other (3.7
percent).

---------------------------
Infections by Area in 2006
---------------------------

5. Infections in the areas of Kanto and Koshinetsu, including Tokyo
and the neighboring prefectures of Ibaraki, Tochigi, Gunma, Saitama,
Chiba, Kanagawa, Niigata, Yamanashi, and Nagano, accounted for 55.5
percent and 52.0 percent of the total numbers of the country's HIV
and AIDS cases respectively in 2006. The number of HIV cases in
Tokyo has grown markedly since 1996, reaching 37.2 percent and 24.4
percent of Japan's total HIV and AIDS cases respectively. Tokyo,
Osaka, and Aichi prefectures reported the highest levels of
infection in Japan, but other areas such as, Hokkaido, Miyagi,
Tochigi, Gunma, Kyoto, Hyogo and Fukuoka also reported increased
infections in 2006.

-------------------------
Cumulative HIV/AIDS Cases
-------------------------

6. Since the start of the national survey in 1984, a cumulative
total of 8,344 HIV cases and 4,050 AIDS cases have been logged in
Japan. However, HIV and AIDS patients (approximately 1,431) who
contracted the virus through contaminated blood products as
hemophilia patients in the 1980s are not included in these numbers.
The following are the cumulative percentages of HIV cases, listed by
infection routes: 35.9 percent through heterosexual contact, 44.7
percent through homosexual contact, 0.5 percent through intravenous
drug use, 0.4 percent through mother-to-child transmission, 2.2

TOKYO 00004172 002.2 OF 002


percent through other routes and 16.4 percent through unknown
routes. AIDS cases also yielded similar figures: 42.0 percent
through heterosexual contact, 28.3 percent through homosexual
contact, 0.8 percent through intravenous drug use, 0.4 percent
through mother-to-child transmission, 2.7 percent through other
routes and 25.8 percent through unknown routes.

7. Among the HIV cases, Japanese males accounted for 67.9 percent
followed by non-Japanese females (14.8 percent), non-Japanese males
(10.3 percent), and Japanese females (7.0 percent). Among the AIDS
cases, Japanese males accounted for 72.2 percent followed by
non-Japanese males (15.2 percent), non-Japanese females (7.2
percent), and Japanese females (5.4 percent). Both HIV and AIDS
cases among Japanese males have increased rapidly since 1999 and
reached their highest level to date in 2006.

------------------------
Local Government Efforts
------------------------

8. Revised guidelines for preventing HIV/AIDS infections came into
force in April 2006. The new guidelines require central and local
governments to clarify their roles and responsibilities. They urge
local governments in particular to provide residents with more
opportunities for HIV testing in order to detect infections and
receive appropriate medical treatment in the early stages. The
guidelines also urge the GOJ/MHLW to support local government
activities by 1) drafting guidelines on conducting HIV examinations
and consultations and 2) providing local governments that report
higher than average levels of infection with more detailed
suggestions of ways to prevent the spread of HIV.

9. Local government efforts to encourage residents to have HIV
antibody tests appeared successful. The number of people nationally
who had voluntary HIV antibody tests in 2006 at local health centers
rose 15.6 percent from the previous year. In ten prefectures of
particular focus to MHLW, due to their HIV/AIDS infection rates in
2005, the number of people tested increased by 7.0 percent on
average from the previous year. Among the ten prefectures --
Ibaraki, Saitama, Chiba, Tokyo, Kanagawa, Yamanashi, Nagano, Aichi,
Osaka and Okinawa -- Nagano was particularly notable with the number
of residents taking HIV tests going up 51.7 percent from the
previous year.

DONOVAN

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