January 13, 2009
HIV-positive men who have sex with men in China continue to experience HIV/AIDS-associated stigma and discrimination, the China Daily reports. According to the Daily, HIV-positive MSM live in the "shadow of guilt and shame that has long cast its pall over homosexuality and HIV/AIDS in China."
Xiao Dong, founder and volunteer leader of a group that conducts HIV/AIDS prevention among MSM in Beijing, said it is difficult for MSM to disclose their status because of the stigma associated with same-sex relationships and HIV/AIDS, even in large cities like Beijing. He added that people "might be ashamed of you if you tell them you're gay or that you have HIV/AIDS." Zhang Ke -- a physician at Beijing's You'an Hospital who works with HIV/AIDS treatment and prevention -- added that HIV/AIDS in China "isn't only a medical issue, but also one of social tolerance." According to Zhang, "It'll take longer to develop a cure for the stigma than it will for the virus." Xiao added he hopes the Chinese government and the public one day will show greater tolerance for HIV/AIDS-related issues among MSM (Lin, China Daily, 1/12).
Reprinted with permission from kaisernetwork.org. You can view the entire Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, search the archives, or sign up for email delivery at www.kaisernetwork.org/dailyreports/hiv. The Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report is published for kaisernetwork.org, a free service of the Kaiser Family Foundation, by The Advisory Board Company. © 2009 by The Advisory Board Company and Kaiser Family Foundation. All rights reserved.