Anna Popova, the head of Rospotrebnadzor, the "Russian Federal Service for Surveillance on Consumer Rights Protection and Human Wellbeing" came out yesterday in support of a bill that would mandate HIV testing before marriage. Today, the State Parliament's health care committee also announced their support of the proposal.

“It's a reasonable proposal and should be supported. The number of HIV-positive people is growing and it is becoming a serious problem. I think our top public health official [Anna Popova, who suggested the move] is absolutely right,” Nikolai Gerasimenko, the first deputy chairman of the committee, told Interfax.

Vadim Pokrovsky, head of the Federal AIDS Center, was quoted as saying he was in support of more HIV testing but only if it wasn't mandatory. 

“Mandatory testing might cause serious problems. For example, who should be informed of the results? The future wife, the bride [if her fiance was tested]? How would she react? Most likely the marriage would fall apart,” he said. “What is going to happen to this bride or groom whose test was positive? The processes that are going to take place next should be seriously thought over."

Facts about hiv in Russia:

 Statistics from the Federal AIDS Center said that 90,000 people contracted HIV in Russia last year, compared to less than 3,000 people in Germany.

 The Kremlin plans to spend $418 million to fight the epidemic this year, a huge increase from their 2014 spending. 

 60% of HIV carriers are thought to have used drugs at one time. 

 Russian schoolchildren recieve no sex education in schools. Russian official Pavel Astakhov vehemently opposes sex education, and has said it will "never" be taught in Russian schools.

 Cover: Wikipedia