Officials have expressed dismay that while worldwide HIV infections continue to decline Indonesia, including Bali, is in the midst of a sharp spike in occurrence of the disease.
“Worldwide it is on the decline, in the United States and Australia, for example. But in Bali it’s increasing,” said Made Suprapta, secretary of the Regional Commission for HIV-AIDS (KPAD) in Bali.
Suprapta said that based on available data there were around 30 new infections in Bali each month, with the majority now coming about through heterosexual sex, rather than through intravenous drug use or homosexual sex, traditionally viewed as the highest risk factors fro HIV infection.
Nationwide 15,589 new cases were recorded in 2011, with 11,485 of those cases falling in the 25-49 age group. There were a total of 420 cases of mother to infant infection. Men accounted for 68.4 percent of the new cases.
As a region Bali ranked fourth for new HIV infections in 2011, with 1141 new cases, after Jakarta (3401), Papua (2044) and East Java (1872).