Five individuals now have HIV, no thanks to a hospital staff who accidentally infected them with the deadly virus at a high-end traditional Chinese medicine hospital in the Zhejiang capital of Hangzhou.
According to local health authorities, a hospital technician at the Zhejiang Provincial Hospital of Traditional Chinese Medicine allegedly re-used a tube which had been previously utilized on a patient with HIV.
The apparent negligence has resulted in the cross-infection of the virus to the unfortunate victims, Shanghaiist reported.
The incident has caused a number of the hospital’s staff to lose their jobs. No less than the hospital’s president and party secretary have been fired. Meanwhile, the involved technician was apprehended by the police and is now under investigation.
The provincial health and family planning commission has released a statement noting that it was notified about the incident on January 26th, without stating the exact date it occurred. No further details on the patients involved, such as was being treated were divulged. It also did not comment on other possible patients who could be at risk of infection.
The incident highlights the lax safety standards that have been plaguing the local medical industry, which caused thousands of Chinese to be infected with HIV/AIDS in the recent past decades.
Blood donations and transfusions have been blamed for 30% of all HIV infections in the country from 1985 to 2005. Although the government has since launched a crackdown against hospital malpractices that have led to such “errors,” it appears that these things continue to happen at an alarming frequency.
Just recently, nine patients got infected with the hepatitis B virus at a hospital in eastern ShandongPprovince, state news agency Xinhua reported.