The number of reported new AIDS cases in Japan in 2011 was a record high 473, the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare reported this week.
According to the ministry, between May 2011 and May 2012, 473 HIV sufferers were diagnosed with AIDS. Medical experts say that patients can live with HIV for up to 10 years before their immune systems deteriorate to the point at which they are diagnosed with AIDS. The ministry said that AIDS infection records began in 1985, TV Asahi reported. The highest numbers were in the Tokai and Kyushu regions, the ministry said.
The ministry said that in the last year, 1,056 people in Japan were diagnosed with HIV. Although the number of diagnoses was slightly lower than the previous year, the ministry's advisory committee on the AIDS virus said this is likely due to the fact that the number of people undergoing tests has decreased. "We strongly urge everyone to get themselves tested for the virus," a committee spokesperson said.© Japan Today