For the first time last year, AIDS has become the most infectious disease in China. 6,897 of its citizens died within the first nine months of 2008 due to the disease. The Chinese government has improved the reporting of HIV/AIDS statistics and is acknowledging its presence in the country. China has denied that AIDS is a problem in the country for a long time, partly due to the low amount of reported deaths.
In recent years, leaders of China have more open about the disease, offered free treatment for the poor, anonymous testing, and have banned discrimination against people who have the disease. The government of China and UNAIDS estimate that the number of citizens in China living with HIV is estimated at 700,000 and 85,000 of these people have full blown AIDS. About 34,864 people have died from aids since its first reported death in 1985. The main causes of HIV infections are due to sex, drug abuse, unsanitary blood plasma, and tainted transfusions in hospitals.