Woman infected with HIV through blood transfusion dies

A woman from the South Banat District who was infected with the HIV virus this year through blood transfusion has died.

Source: Tanjug
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(Thinkstock)
(Thinkstock)

The woman's identity has not been revealed.

Vladimir Petrovic, director of the Institute for Public Health of Vojvodina (IZJZV), said that the patient's death was the consequence of the gravity of her primary illness - and that it came despite the doctors using "all modern methods of treatment" to help her.

Petrovic also said that this was the first case of HIV being transmitted through blood transfusion in Vojvodina since 1985, when the first cases of the infection were registered in Serbia's northern province.

The IZJZV announced that its epidemiological service, together with the Transfusion Institution of Vojvodina, immediately after learning of the HIV positive blood donor "carried out all necessary epidemiological investigations of the case and undertook all necessary measures to prevent further spread of the infection."

According to the IZJZV, "nobody in the health services made any omissions" - instead, they blamed "the so-called window period of six weeks to six months, on average two months, from the moment of infection, during which it is impossible to determine whether a blood donor is infected with HIV."

The IZJZV further stated that the now deceased patient was treated for her primary illness, "that ranks among the most serious diseases," when she received the blood transfusion.

"When he arrived to donate blood, the donor did not provide any information that would eliminate him from the blood donation either temporarily or permanently, while during the obligatory test screening of markers of infections that can be spread through transfusion, his donation had a non-reactive result, and was as such used for the transfusion treatment of the patient," the institution said.

When the same donor gave blood the next time, it was discovered that he was infected with HIV "and he was immediately eliminated from further blood donation."

The patient that previously received his blood was tested and found to be infected with the virus.

The woman is now dead "from the consequences of the gravity of her primary illness," the IZJZV said on Monday.

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