50,000 patients infected with Hepatitis C

31st May 2005, Comments 0 comments

31 May 2005, AMSTERDAM — Up to 50,000 people were infected in the Netherlands with Hepatitis C via blood transfusions during the 1980s and 1990s, the Dutch Hepatitis Association (HVN) said on Tuesday.

31 May 2005

AMSTERDAM — Up to 50,000 people were infected in the Netherlands with Hepatitis C via blood transfusions during the 1980s and 1990s, the Dutch Hepatitis Association (HVN) said on Tuesday.

However, the HAN said the patients are not aware they were infected with the virus, because the illness only starts showing symptoms 10 years after infection.

Despite repeated requests, the Dutch government has repeatedly refused to track down the patients, news service 'NOS' reported on Tuesday.

The revelations came on the same day the Canadian Red Cross (CRC) pleaded guilty in court to the distribution of contaminated blood.

Tens of thousands of Canadians were infected with the HIV virus and hepatitis B. Three thousand have since died, 'Radio Netherlands' reported.

In exchange for a guilty plea, the Canadian public prosecutor agreed to drop charges of criminal negligence causing death and nuisance against the CRC.

The CRC will also donate USD 1.2 million to research and to fund scholarships for family members of those afflicted. It also made a public apology to victims and families.

[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2005]

Subject: Dutch news

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