China bans hospitals from refusing AIDS patients

Linked to illegal blood buying syndicates

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BEIJING (AP) - China's Health Ministry has banned hospitals from turning away patients infected with HIV/AIDS.

A circular issued by the ministry on Friday ordered health authorities at all level of government to guarantee treatment for HIV/AIDS sufferers.

The order covers both sufferers already known to have the condition and those whose infection is discovered while undergoing treatment. It requires authorities to ensure protective measures for health care professionals.

It comes two days after Vice Premier Li Keqiang intervened to demand a hospital in the northeastern city of Tianjin provide treatment for a 25-year-old lung cancer patient after the man was turned away for being HIV-positive.

A decade ago, Li helped cover up China's initial AIDS outbreak in the central province of Henan caused by illegal blood buying syndicates.

Copyright Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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