HIV-blood victim to sue in Peru

Blood banks inspected after at least four people infected during blood transfusions.

    Peru's health minister said all the country's
    blood banks would be reviewed [File: AP]
    The 44-year-old mother of three may have been infected with HIV along with three other patients, one of whom was an 11 month-old baby - through blood tainted with the virus the Daniel Carrion hospital in the port city of Callao near Lima in April.

    National review

    Peruvian officials have been inspecting the country's 240 blood banks after at least four people were infected with HIV, the virus that causes Aids, during blood tranfusions.

    Carlos Vallejos, Peru's health minister, said that all the blood banks would be inspected by a commission that includes officials from the World Health Organisation.

    Rivera was infected with the virus after receiving blood transfusions during an operation for a tumour in her uterus in April.

    "This situation cannot continue," he said late on Thursday. "All of Peru's blood banks are being reviewed."

    The situation created widespread panic and brought extensive criticism in the country's media.

    'Worrying'

    Vallejos appealled to the public to trust the country's public health services and said Peru fulfilled international standards for blood donation screening.

    But Jose Cruz, an adviser on blood and laboratory safety for the Washington-based Pan-american Health Organisation, told the Associated Press news agency that Peru's blood banks were "worrying".

    He said that Peru, along with Bolivia, Colombia and Mexico, is on the organisations list of countries that fail to perform preliminary disease screening on all blood collected in blood banks.

    The organisation's most recent figures show almost a quarter of the blood Peru's banks receive is not properly screened, Cruz said.

    This is not the first time patients have been infected at state facilities. In 2004, five newborn babies were infected with HIV at Lima's maternity hospital.

    About 30 people were recently shown to have  been infected with hepatitis C at a state-run dialysis center.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Why some African Americans are moving to Africa

    Escaping systemic racism: Why I quit New York for Accra

    African-Americans are returning to the lands of their ancestors as life becomes precarious and dangerous in the USA.

    Why Jerusalem is not the capital of Israel

    Why Jerusalem is not the capital of Israel

    No country in the world recognises Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

    US: Muslims to become second-largest religious group

    US: Muslims to become second-largest religious group

    By 2050 the number of Muslims is projected to reach 8.1 million, or 2.1 percent, of the total US population.