GUWAHATI, June 18 - Investigations into the shocking incident of a three-year-old child testing HIV positive at the Gauhati Medical College and Hospital (GMCH) remain inconclusive with both the probe panels failing to pinpoint the exact source of infection.
Reports of both the inquiry committees � the GMCH-constituted panel and the one formed under the Assam State AIDS Control Society (ASACS) have already been submitted but none could unearth the exact source of infection, sources at the Health Department told The Assam Tribune.
The child who was admitted to the GMCH in April last year with severe burn injuries was discharged in October the same year. He was again admitted in March this year. During the course of his stay at the GMCH, the child underwent multiple surgeries and blood transfusion along with skin grafting before being tested HIV positive in April.
Insiders at the Health Department claimed that the ASACS has only submitted its preliminary report and that a more intensive and separate line of investigation is being favoured to unearth the source of the HIV virus, provided those at the helm of affairs give a nod to it. Sources also claimed that the reports of both the probe panels have left more questions than answers in their respective reports.
Giving an insight of the report submitted by the GMCH-constituted probe panel on Wednesday, a senior official of the Health Department said that the investigation although insisted that there was no lapse on the part of the hospital authorities, it, however, stated that it was beyond the scope of the probe panel to find out if the child was infected outside the hospital.
The GMCH probe panel had explored possibilities of the child getting infected either through blood transfusion or during the grafting of skin. An open wound that the child carried also fell in the line of investigation of the GMCH probe panel.
The principal-cum-chief superintendent of the GMCH, Dr AK Adhikari when contacted, told this reporter that the findings suggested no lapse on the part of the hospital authorities and as far as the child getting infected outside the hospital is concerned, that remains beyond the scope of the in-house investigation.
�Before being admitted to the GMC again, the child was with their parents for a period of six months and we do not have the health information of the child during the period. We cannot exactly say what had happened to him during that period,� Dr Adhikari said.
He said that blood samples of all the donors, except the three who could not be traced, were tested negative and all the other possible sources were examined scientifically before filing the report.
He said that the GMCH, including the doctors, is following universal safety guidelines during its day-to-day affairs and also necessary efforts are being taken to ensure safety of medical staff and the patients.