Fake doctor accused of infecting 21 people with HIV

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Police suspect that a fake doctor has infected hundreds of villagers with HIV by using a single syringe to administer injections while treating them for the common cold.

'We ask HIV patients various things to know the source of infection, Choudhary said. Further, the department found that he had used a single syringe for injection in the name of cheaper treatment.

Singh said Kumar had gone into hiding and police were searching for him. "During another screening in November, another 13 were reported", Chief Medical Officer Dr SP Chaudhary said.

Choudhary said he was not sure how numerous 33 cases were connected to Kumar, but that an investigation by a state government committee was continuing.

Kumar treated at least 50 people a day with the same injection, cleaning it with plain water, before injecting the next patient, locals told The Indian Express. Of those, 9,100 were children under age 15.

The small outbreak comes amid a massive shortage of doctors and hospitals in India. The Indian Medical Association estimated there are 1 million fake doctors practicing in the country despite campaigns by health authorities.

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Critics have in the past blamed a lack of stringent criminal penalties that allow quacks to thrive.

Meanwhile, Uttar Pradesh Health Minister Siddharth Nath Singh has assured a proper investigation into the matter.

The therapy involves a combination of anti-retroviral drugs to suppress HIV and stop its progression.

India had 2.1 million people living with HIV at the end of 2016, according to a UNAIDS report.

"An examination demonstrated that every one of them had taken infusions from one individual", Choudhury said.

"After we found that a large number of cases were being reported from this area, a screening camp was held, in which 566 persons were examined". Prasad had allegedly given permission to an NGO to use the facility and did not provide mattresses and blankets to the patients who had to spend the night in the open.