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Number of Aids deaths increase in Russia, against global trend

Published on Jul 16, 2014 11:58 PM

MOSCOW (AFP) - The number of deaths from Aids is going up in Russia, contrary to a global downward trend, a senior Russian health official said on Wednesday, blaming a lack of public education about HIV infection.

"Last year we registered 22,000 Aids-related deaths, against 20,000 the year before," the head of the Russian Federal Agency against Aids Vadim Pokrovsky told AFP.

Today, some 700,000 Russians are infected with HIV, Mr Pokrovsky said. "Generally Russians are very poorly informed and often do not go to the doctor until it is too late," he said, also blaming a lack of media coverage of HIV infection and Aids.

"Russian media paid great attention to Aids in the 1990s, when the virus was still almost non-existent in the country, but now seems to be tired of the topic," he said.

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