SAO PAULO—Brazil's government says it handed out nearly a half-billion free condoms last year—a record for the nation's campaign to reduce AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases.

Brazil's Health Ministry says it distributed 493 million condoms last year. That's 2 1/2 condoms for every person in Latin America's largest nation. They cost the government about $19 million.

The ministry says the Brazilian government buys and distributes more condoms than any other nation. About 90 percent of all condoms used in Brazil are provided by the government.

The federal government distributes the condoms, with some going to states and municipalities to be handed out in various programs including in Brazil's schools.


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