Health officials were not expecting a big increase in acquired immune deficiency syndrome cases in Australia, the Minister for Health, Mr Roper, said yesterday. […]
“We have got to get some perspective in relation to AIDS. While we can be concerned about the emergence of AIDS, there are far more people killed on the roads in Victoria in one year than there have been AIDS deaths worldwide in the past four years.”
Mr Roper said it had been suggested that the man who died in Prince Henry’s was a homosexual and confirmation of this could result from the investigations by the Centre for Disease Control. Mr Roper said he had been advised that the victim was not capable of transmitting the disease sexually during his visit to Melbourne.
The Minister said the man arrived in April this year and suffered from lethargy and weight loss soon after. He was referred to a senior doctor at Prince Henry’s for tests, and the immune deficiency was detected in pathological examinations after an operation.
Mr Roper said that every possible precaution. Including barrier nursing and other special arrangements, had been taken to protect medical staff at Prince Henry’s from the time the man was admitted. “I want to emphasise again that not a single case has been reported of nursing or medical staff contracting AIDS,” he said.
“It appears that although the disease has a high mortality rate, the infectivity is very low. In addition, this was in every way a US case. It was a coincidence that he died here.”
Tags: appeal for calm / government responses / media criticised / Melbourne / Prince Henry's Hospital (Melbourne) / Tom Roper
TISSUE specimens and the results of a post-mortem examination on a 43-year-old man who died of suspected acquired immune deficiency syndrome in Melbourne on Friday have been sent to the US for further examination.