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China's borders face rising risk of imported diseases

Updated: 2013-08-30 21:40
By Shan Juan (

Rising cross-border communications and exchanges have made containing imported cases of various infectious diseases a challenge, a senior Chinese official said.

Zhi Shuping, the minister of the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine, made the remarks at an inquiry held by the 12th National People's Congress Standing Committee on Thursday.

Senior officials from 15 ministries and administrations — including health and family planning, development and reform, education, public security, finance, environmental protection, water resources and agriculture — attended the session on the prevention and control of infectious diseases.

Such inquiries are a means by which the NPC oversees the State Council, the Supreme People's Court and the Supreme People's Procuratorate.

"Chinese regions bordering other countries, such as Yunnan province and the Guangxi Zhuang and Xinjiang Uygur autonomous regions, are at a particularly high risk of imported infections, given the limited medical and public-health services and frequent cross-border exchanges among people," Zhi warned.

He said that about 20 percent of long-haul truck drivers in Yunnan tested positive for HIV in a survey that tested 500 drivers at random for the virus in border areas in 2000.

In Longyan, Fujian province, an HIV screening among 138 local wives from Vietnam in 2010 found 12 with HIV/AIDS, he added.

Li Bin, minister of the National Health and Family Planning Commission, said that nearly 90 percent of the newly found HIV/AIDS cases involve sexual transmissions on the Chinese mainland.

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