Some Chinese Government Officials at High Risk of AIDS Infection

November 16, 2006 Updated: November 16, 2006

A survey conducted by AIDS policy expert Ms. Jing Wei shows that some Chinese government officials are indiscreet in their personal lives and have became at high risk of AIDS infection.

The Southern Weekend reported that the survey ended in October of this year. Participants of the survey were Chinese provincial, city and county level officials from 15 provinces and cities. The survey shows many of these government officials lack common sense in regards to AIDS. For example, more than 60 percent of the participants did not know that there is no immunization vaccine for AIDS and 30 percent thought that AIDS carriers must be isolated from healthy people.

When asked what they would do if a subordinate official was infected by AIDS, about half of the participants chose “Keep it a secret and allow him to continue working.” The other half chose either “Discharge him,” “Make his situation public ,” or “Don't know what to do.” In addition, nearly 25 percent of the participating officials thought that preventing the spread of AIDS either has nothing to do with their job, or they didn't know whether it is relevant.

Many of the corrupt officials who were investigated or sentenced had more than one lover, so there was a very high probability of AIDS infection.

Ms. Jing Wei, a professor at the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) Central Party Committee Training School, conducted the survey from September 2005 to October 2006. The participants were officials attending CCP provincial and city level training schools in Hebei Province, Ningxia AR, and Shandong Province. Most participants were provincial and county level officials.

Ms. Jing conducted a similar survey among officials attending the same school from 2001 to 2003. She said that, compared to the last survey, officials' common knowledge about AIDS has increased, and more officials know that AIDS is transmitted through the blood. However, learning how AIDS spreads did not reduce these officials' fear of and discrimination against AIDS patients.