Doctor in Pakistan infects 900 kids with HIV after using discarded syringes

01 Nov 2019 / 09:46 H.

ALL doctors take the Hippocratic Oath, a promise to adhere to a code of ethics and not to harm their patients.

Unfortunately, a paediatrician in Ratodero, Pakistan named Dr Muzaffar Ghanghro disregarded the oath and reportedly went rogue in his bid to serve the poor.

The doctor allegedly infected nearly 900 children under the age of 12 with HIV. He did this by injecting young children using old syringes and needles that have been discarded in the bin!

Sadly, many poor families became victims of their circumstances because the doctor only charged a low rate of 30 rupees (80 sen) per visit.

A parent of an infected child, Mr. Jalbani said he had seen Dr Ghanghro rummage through his bin for an old and used needle to use on his six-year-old son. When Mr. Jalbani protested, the doctor merely accused Mr Jalbani for being too poor to buy a new needle and told him to go to another doctor if he refuses treatment. The son is now diagnosed as HIV-positive.

Scarily, another parent accused the doctor for applying the same drip on 50 children without changing the needle!

While the doctor has since been arrested and charged with negligence, manslaughter and causing unintentional harm, he has not been convicted. According to The New York Times, the doctor has renewed his medical certificate and now works as a general practitioner in a government hospital.

Health officials have said that it was unlikely that Dr Ghanghro was the sole cause of the outbreak because health workers have seen many doctors and barbers reusing needles and blades. The families he has hurt will have a tough time coming to terms with the incident.

Imran Akbar Arbani, the doctor who first identified the outbreak amongst the children told The New York Times: “Unless these quack doctors, barbers and dentists are not checked, the number of incidents of HIV will continue going up.”

Muzaffar Ghanghro on the left.

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