HIV/AIDS cases have been increased by 10 per cent due to the transfusion of infected blood according to data released by National Aids Control Organisation. In 2015, the number of cases were 1,445 which has increased to 1,560 in the year 2016 so far.
According to National Aids Control Organisation HIV/Aids cases have reduced in last five years due to some other factors. A senior official of TS Aids Society told that HIV infection through blood transfusions spreads because many youth donate blood in the ‘window period’ when virus’ presence cannot be tested.
“Some of them are in the window period of infection while donating blood. The blood bank tests for Hepatitis B, C and HIV are carried out. In the window period the infection can’t be identified. Hence the transfusion leads to the spread of the disease."
According to AIDS Society, only those who have joined their programme are followed up and tracked by them. Those taking treatment from private institutions are never traced as the data is not submitted to them. While the blood banks state that they need high-end equipment in order to identify these viruses in the window period.
A senior member of the Institute of Preventive Medicine said, “There is new technology in terms of testing which is available where the identification process is faster. This equipment are available with a few blood banks in the city. But by and large the existing tests are being carried out in the blood banks and only certified blood is given to recipients.”
But the data has something different to tell as it is found that one among every 100 HIV patients have developed the problem due to infected blood transfusion which means that chances for contracting the virus by HIV patient in India through blood transfusion are high.
This requires strengthening of the drug control authority who must carry out frequent checks and also ensure that testing is carried out regularly, according to an official.