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Dublin: 7 °C Saturday 22 February, 2020

A 5-year-old girl contracted HIV from a blood transfusion

According to the National Health and Family Planning Commission – nearly half a million people are living with HIV/AIDS in China.

File photo: A woman whose son was infected with HIV, wearing a face mask baring the words
File photo: A woman whose son was infected with HIV, wearing a face mask baring the words "Blood products infect us with AIDS" cries during an AIDS awareness event on the World AIDS Day. (AP Photo/Andy Wong, File)
Image: Andy Wong

A FIVE-YEAR-OLD girl contracted HIV through a blood transfusion she had during an operation four years ago.

Health authorities in the Fujian province of southeast China have confirmed the news to the country’s official news agency Xinhua.

The child, Maomao, (not her real name) was just eight-months-old when she underwent heart surgery for congenital heart disease in 2010.

She tested positive for the virus in September 2014 after she had come down with a fever for 17 days.

Xinhua reports that Maomao’s medical fees have spiralled to 300,000 yuan (almost €41,000) and her family are now in debt.

The provincial health and family planning committee said the Fujian Medical University Union Hospital, where the operation took place, and the blood center, which supplied the blood, must give “humanitarian compensation” to the child.

Yang Minhong, an official with the committee, said:

One of eight blood donors, whose blood was used during Maomao’s operation, is a person living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA), who had no idea that he/she was a PLWHA when he/she donated blood, and the blood was accepted as he/she was in a ‘window period’.

The same donor’s blood was also used for two other operations, and officials are trying to track down the patients.

The investigation into Maomao’s case found that neither the hospital nor the blood center had broken any law or regulation on blood collection and transfusion.

However, the hospital and the blood center are starting negotiations with Maomao’s parents regarding the compensation.

Read: Women using birth control shot have increased risk of contracting HIV>

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