The case lodged by a 9-year-old Chinese boy against a local health agency for infecting him with HIV virus has ended up in favor of the health concern , much to the disappointment of the applicant and his family members.
The boy is said to have contracted the virus following a post-operative blood transfusion, in a Beijing hospital (Stomatological Hospital). Red Cross blood center is believed to have provided the infected blood product. Both parents have been found to have a negative infection status, highlighting the possibility of HIV transmission through blood transfusion.
Authorities, owing to lack of proper available proof regarding the issue have turned down the case. The victim's parents had claimed a compensation for the mental trauma and other forms of medical expenses incurred.
A case filed earlier by the child turned out to be unsuccessful following refusal of the blood center to submit the medical records for verification, in an effort to retain confidentiality of the medical record.
The positive infection status was identified in November 2003, when the boy underwent blood tests for diagnosis of his pneumonia infection. The only possible source of infection was identified as a blood transfusion (August 2002) following surgical repair of the boy's cleft palate, a developmental abnormality associated with the face.
The director of the hospital however dismissed the blame, stating that the boy's HIV infection was not connected to the hospital. Furthermore, she said that the boy could have contracted the virus elsewhere as he had been operated in other hospitals in Henan province previously.
There has been an increase in the number of lawsuits against numerous health agencies in China over HIV-tainted blood in recent years. Contrary to the above case, the applicants infected with the HIV virus have received financial compensation in numerous instances. The number of HIV-infected people in China is believed to be over 1 million, although the actual figure is likely to be much higher.