Two More Test Positive for HIV in Roka Commune

Two more people have tested positive for HIV in Battambang province’s Roka commune this month, bringing the total number infected to 272 since an outbreak of the virus was first detected in December, a health official said Wednesday.

“A 53-year-old man tested positive for HIV on April 9 and a 6-year-old boy got tested yesterday [Tuesday] and he also tested positive for the HIV virus,” said commune health center chief By Beng Sor.

Officials have blamed the epidemic on Yem Chrin, an unlicensed medic who admitted to regularly reusing syringes, and who is facing murder charges.

“Those two people got treatment from the unlicensed doctor Yem Chrin, so we suspect that they were infected from his treatment,” Mr. Beng Sor said.

Ly Penh Sun, director of the Health Ministry’s National Center for HIV/AIDS, Dermatology and STD, said nearly 192 villagers were receiving anti-retroviral treatment for HIV, including 31 children. Eight infected villagers have died since the outbreak was detected.

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