Lying about being HIV-positive and then donating blood can potentially lead to the spread of the disease, which is why a Malaysian man has now landed in hot water in Singapore.
According to a report by The Straits Times, a 27-year-old Malaysian pleaded guilty on Wednesday (May 3) and was sentenced to 3 months and 2 weeks in jail under the Infectious Diseases Act.
He had donated blood after lying about his sexual activities and about having human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), which has no cure but is treatable with medicine.
The man had decided to donate blood in October 2020 after completing a donor health assessment questionnaire in which he was asked if he has had sex with more than 1 partner in the last 12 months. He was also asked if he was intimate with another man.
He answered ‘no’ to both questions.
After the questionnaire, a medical screener from the Health Sciences Authority’s (HSA’s) blood services group interviewed him and informed him that he could be prosecuted should any of his answers be false or misleading.
She also explained that he can call a 24-hour hotline if he believed his blood should not be given to another person.
With that information in hand, he did nothing and donated blood, which was later tested and found to be infected with HIV.
A prosecutor from the Ministry of Health (MOH) told the court that the man had had sex with his former girlfriend in February 2020, and in August 2020, he had sex with a man.
His lawyers, who were representing him on a pro-bono basis, informed the court that he used to work in the food and beverage industry in Singapore but has since been unemployed for 2 years. After living off of his savings, he received a small allowance of an undisclosed amount through the help of social workers.
He was ultimately found guilty for his actions.
What do you think about this? Do feel free to share your thoughts in the comment section.