2-Year-Old Contracts HIV in South China, Parents Blame Hospital

By Tom Smith, July 30, 2018

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Experts from the National Health Commission are launching an investigation after a two-year-old boy was confirmed to have been infected with HIV in Guiyang, the capital of Southwest China’s Guizhou province, China Daily reports

The toddler, going by the pseudonym of Xiao Tian, first started showing symptoms after being released from Guizhou Maternal and Child Health Care Hospital, where he was treated for choking on an apple slice on October 28, 2017. Confusingly, the boy spent nearly a month at the hospital for what should have been an otherwise straightforward medical procedure, according to Sixth Tone.

Xiao Tian’s mother Tang took him back to the hospital on November 23 — just two days after he was initially discharged — when she discovered that the child had breathing abnormalities. 

The boy was treated in the hospital’s ICU with a bronchofibroscope, tracheal intubation and blood transfusion, as per the doctor's orders. However there were no signs of recovery and he was then transferred to the Children’s Hospital of Chongqing Medical University on December 7. 

It was there where he tested positive for HIV, much to the astonishment of his parents. Both parents tested negative for HIV.

On June 1, the boy once again tested HIV positive at the Affiliated Hospital of Guizhou Medical University, and then for a third time on June 27 at Guiyang No. 5 People’s Hospital. 

Tang suspected that the infection may have occurred at Guizhou Maternal and Child Health Care Hospital. 

The parents reported the case to Guiyang Health and Family Planning Commission on June 30, however on July 13 they were surprised to hear that the hospital had been cleared of any wrongdoing. 

According to a statement from the commission, 33 hospital staff had come into contact with the boy during his ICU stay, and all of them had tested negative for HIV. The statement added that the hospital's blood stores were safe.

The parents then decided to report the case to a different institution, and now the National Health commission will send experts to investigate. The investigation is expected to last around 10 days. 

“If they did nothing wrong, then where is the problem?” Tang was quoted as saying, according to Sixth Tone.

[Top image via Pixabay]

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