New Delhi: National AIDS Control Organisation (NACO) has revealed that around 2234 people in the country have been infected with the deadly disease Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) while transfusing the blood in past 17 months.
Uttar Pradesh with 361 cases tops the list of unsafe blood transfusion practices in hospitals. Gujarat, Maharashtra and New Delhi are the other leading states with 292, 276 and 264 cases respectively.
The NACO revealed the data in response to a Right to Information (RTI) query by activist Chetan Kothari.
"The government has been slackening on raising AIDS awareness due to budget cuts. Cases like these keep happening over and over again and no action is taken against erring hospitals and blood banks. This is an extremely serious issue, and the government needs to address it urgently," said Kothari.
According to its latest annual report, NACO’s total blood collection was around 30 lakh units till September 2014. Nearly 84% of the donated blood units came from voluntary blood donation, which seem to be the source of the problem, according to Naresh Goyal, Deputy Director General, NACO.
The law mandates that donors/donated blood should be screened for transmissible infections of HIV, HBV and Hepatitis C, malaria and syphilis.