China's Health Ministry to "Severely Punish" People Responsible for Unsafe Blood Sales; 25 People Receive HIV-Positive Blood Through Transfusions
December 6, 2005
China's Ministry of Health earlier this week announced new rules that will "severely punish those responsible" for collecting and distributing untested blood that leads to people becoming infected with bloodborne diseases such as HIV through subsequent transfusions, Reuters India reports. The rules -- which will take effect in March and are intended to enforce a 1998 ban on blood sales and also will make collection centers responsible for the safety of donated blood -- come after several hospital patients tested HIV-positive after receiving sold blood (Reuters India, 12/6). An HIV-positive Chinese man sold blood 15 times without being tested for the virus at the Central Blood Bank of Dehui City -- in China's Jilin province -- from January 2003 to June 2004, and his blood was given to 25 people through transfusions, the China Daily reports. The health bureau of Changchun, China, which has authority in Dehui, began investigating the blood bank in October 2005 after six recipients of blood transfusions donated by the bank died. Bureau officials diagnosed the man, identified as Song, as HIV-positive on Oct. 20 and found that at least 18 of the 25 people who received his blood contracted the virus, and three of them have died (Zhang, China Daily, 12/5). Six health officials in Dehui -- including the director and deputy director of the city's health bureau -- were either placed on probation or removed from leadership posts by the Chinese government, and local officials have detained 11 workers at the bank in connection with the investigation (Xinhuanet, 12/3). In addition, Xinhua News Agency reported that 19 HIV-positive people in Heilongjiang province have filed a lawsuit alleging that they contracted the virus through blood provided by a hospital (Reuters India, 12/6). Hundreds of thousands of people in China in the early and mid-1990s contracted HIV through unsafe blood collection procedures. Although the country outlawed blood sales in 1998 and reduced the number of blood collection organizations operating in the country, about 350 such groups currently operate and allegedly remain motivated by profit (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 8/1). The new health ministry rules also will ban blood sales for stem cell research trials (Reuters India, 12/6).
New HIV Case Estimate Lower, Health Ministry Official Says
Reprinted with permission from kaisernetwork.org. You can view the entire Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, search the archives, or sign up for email delivery at www.kaisernetwork.org/dailyreports/hiv. The Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report is published for kaisernetwork.org, a free service of the Kaiser Family Foundation, by The Advisory Board Company. © 2005 by The Advisory Board Company and Kaiser Family Foundation. All rights reserved.
China Considering Evidence That Male Circumcision Could Reduce Risk of HIV Infection, Unlikely to Launch Campaign, Health Official Says
This article was provided by Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. It is a part of the publication Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report. Visit the Kaiser Family Foundation's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.