|Epidemiological Fact Sheet on HIV/AIDS and Sexually Transmitted Infections: Papua New Guinea (UNAIDS, 2000, 12 p.)|
HIV prevalence in Papua New Guinea remains at a relatively low level compared to other countries in the Region. The first cases were reported in 1987, with HIV prevalence increasing annually throughout the early 1990s. In March 1999, cumulative reported HIV infections reached 1741, including 618 people with AIDS. More than 4400 adults and 300 children were estimated to be living with HIV in 1998, representing a prevalence rate among adults of 0.19%. About one fifth of all cases are reported.
Reported cases are equally distributed among men and women, and infection appears to be concentrated in the capital city of Port Moresby. Although the mode of transmission is unknown for a significant proportion of cases, 90% of cases for which the mode is known resulted from heterosexual contact. Prevalence remains low among blood donors (0.015%, 1997) and pregnant women (0.37%, 1998). Higher HIV prevalence rates were reported among patients with other STI (1995, Port Moresby, 1.7%), FSWs (1998, Port Moresby, 16.7%; Lae 3.1%), and TB patients (1998, Port Moresby, 7.7%).
Systematic STI surveillance has not been established. However, prevalence rates as high as 58% have been observed among rural men and women in the highlands. The most common STI were trichomoniasis (46%) and chlamydia (26%). Available data on STI/HIV risk behaviour indicate very low levels of condom use (7%).