WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:
- In November, Uttar Pradesh health officials suspected malpractice when they discovered an increase of patients testing positive for HIV from the same area.
- Police in Bangarmau arrested a fake doctor who allegedly infected at least 33 people with HIV, in northern India.
- Rajendra Yadav was accused of using a tainted needle while treating “his patients.”
Police officials arrested Rajendra Yadav on Wednesday for impersonating a doctor, spreading HIV virus, and for attempting to commit culpable homicide.
“We are trying to identify how officials found out that this is the main guy, how they knew and who told them about him. We are investigating the case to make sure that he is responsible,” said Arun Pratap Singh, a Bangarmau police official.
Unnao district chief medical officer Sushil Choudhary said that Yadav passed himself off as a doctor and treated his patients at their homes. He charged his patients for just a few cents.
There was a suspicion of malpractice late last year when a number of patients tested positive for HIV, the virus that causes AIDS.
“We realized that a lot of cases are coming from just one area,” said Choudhary. “We set up a tent, awareness sessions and provided treatment to the patients.”
The infected patients, all claiming they were treated by Yadav, complained that he never changed needles before making the injections.
“There is no way to confirm how this happened. It may have been through an infected needle that was not changed,” said Choudhary.
India has a population of 1.33 billion people. According to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, the ratio was one doctor for every 1,596 Indians.
Lacking with sufficient healthcare, many Indians living in rural areas often turn to unqualified doctors who charge a nominal fee.
The Indian government has been doing efforts to increase the quality of healthcare by setting up new medical colleges and improving existing ones.