The combined number of people found to be infected with HIV or diagnosed with AIDS in Japan fell for the second straight year in 2018, the health ministry said Thursday.

The total stood at 1,317, down by 72 from the previous year, the ministry said.

An official at the ministry’s committee for AIDS surveillance called on people to take HIV/AIDS tests without hesitation. Consultations are available at public health centers, the official added.

Last year, 940 people were newly confirmed to be infected with HIV, down by 36, and the number of new AIDS patients came to 377, down also by 36, according to the ministry.

Japanese accounted for 1,143 of the combined total, down by 50, and foreign nationals for 174, down by 22.

Of the total, 875 were infected through sexual contact between same-sex individuals, down by 60, and 246 through heterosexual relations, down by two.

By age group, people in their 30s accounted for 409, and those in their 20s accounted for 350.

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