HIV blood transfusion in VIMSAR: NHRC asks Odisha govt to pay compensation

Bhubaneswar: The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has asked Odisha Chief Secretary to pay Rs 1 lakh each to two victims for wrong transfusion of HIV blood.

The blood transfusion was done in 2016 at VIMSAR, Burla in Sambalpur district. The NHRC has also directed the officials concerned to submit the proof of payment within eight weeks.

The NHRC has passed the order recently acting on a petition and subsequent submissions filed by lawyer and human rights activist Radhakanta Tripathy on the matter.

The Joint Secretary, Health & Family Welfare Department has said that payment of the compensation could not be disbursed to the victims due to non-availability of their address.

The NHRC has asked the Collectors of Sambalpur and Jharsuguda districts to publish a public notice in local newspapers in favour of the victims for payment of compensation to them.

The human rights activist alleged that a 70-year-old person hailing from Rairakhol was admitted to the surgery ward of VIMSAR on June 9, 2016. He had undergone operation on June 13, 2016.

Similarly, a 60-year-old person of Brajarajnagar was admitted to the hospital on June 12, 2016 for a leg surgery. It was found that infected blood with HIV in this first case and hepatitis in the second case was transfused, due to negligence of the doctors and staff of VIMSAR, Burla.

The contractual data entry operator and the lab technician involved in transfusion of infected blood were disengaged from their services by the Odisha State AIDS Control Society and State Blood Transfusion Council, Odisha respectively.

Dr Rajendra Pattnaik, the medical officer on duty and Dr Susanta Kar, the then medical officer in charge of blood bank, were placed under suspension and disciplinary proceedings U/R 15 of OCS initiated against them.