Selling Blood Spreads HIV

  • Anuradha Chaddah
  • Zunyou WuEmail author
Part of the Public Health in China book series (PUBHECH, volume 1)


In the central farmland of the early 1990s, China saw the average farmer working long hours, rising before dawn and often not returning home until after sunset. Fields were ploughed, planted and irrigated by hand. Compensation for these long days of labour was minimal: the average rural farming household earned between US&8 and US&12 a month, a meagre living eked out from an average of 0.05 ha of land per person, about the size of two tennis courts. Faced with pressures to feed and educate one’s family and to ensure the successful marriage of one’s children (often an expensive proposition), the farm labourer was in a position of particular financial vulnerability. It was through this fragile population that the commercial plasma donation industry ploughed a disease-ridden trench leading to the infection of thousands with HIV.


Blood Product Plasma Collection Collection Centre Local Health Authority Plasma Donor 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. 1.
    The UN Theme Group on HIV/AIDS in China. HIV/AIDS: China’s Titanic Peril, 2002. Update of the AIDS situation and needs assessment report. Beijing: UNAIDS; 2002.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Zhang W. China’s journey fighting AIDS – participant stories. Beijing: People’s Medical Publishing House; 2015.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Shi L, Wang J, Liu Z, Stevens L, Sadler A, Ness P, et al. Blood donor management in China. Transfus Med Hemother. 2014;41(4):273–82.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Bandurski D, Hala M. Investigative journalism in China: eight cases in Chinese watchdog journalism. Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press; 2010.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Yan J, Xiao S, Zhou L, Tang Y, Xu G, Luo D, et al. A social epidemiological study on HIV/AIDS in a village of Henan Province. China AIDS Care. 2013;25(3):302–8.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Wu Z, Rou K, Detels R. Prevalence of HIV infection among former commercial plasma donors in rural eastern China. Health Policy Plan. 2001;16(1):41–6.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Wu Z, Dong N, Guo W. Discovery and control of the HIV/AIDS epidemic among plasma donors in China. In: Li L, Zhan S, editors. Epidemiological research cases in China. Beijing: People’s Medical Publishing House; 2008. p. 153–64.Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Yang F, Wu Z, Xu C, Zhang Y. The feasibility and acceptability of promoting condom use among the families with HIV infected individuals. Chin J Epidemiol. 2001;22(5):330–3.Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Zheng X, Mei Z, Wang C, Wang L, Guo J, Qiao XC, et al. Residual risk research of HIV infection after blood screening in one county in China. Chin J Epidemiol. 2000;21(1):13–4.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    AIDS, syphilis, hepatitis: Shanxi exposes case involving 2 tons of infected blood. Southern Metropolis Daily. Guangzhou; 31 Mar 2000.Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Wang L. AIDS in Henan [Translated and quoted in Bandurski and Hala, 2010]. Dahe Daily. 11 May 2000.Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    People’s Republic of China. Law of the People’s Republic of China on blood donation. 29 Dec 1997.Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Zhuang P. Fears over closure of blood plasma collection centres. Hong Kong: South China Morning Post; 2011.Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Rogowska-Szadkowska D. Consequences of the commercialisation of plasma and blood in China. Przegl Epidemiol. 2011;65:515–9.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Gao X, Cui Q, Shi X, Su J, Peng Z, Chen X, et al. Prevalence and trend of hepatitis C virus infection among blood donors in Chinese mainland: a systematic review and meta-analysis. BMC Infect Dis. 2011;11:88.Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Shan J. Better testing to secure safe blood supply. Beijing: China Daily; 2015.Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Erwin K. The circulatory system: blood procurement, AIDS, and the social body in China. Med Anthropol Q. 2006;20(2):139–59.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Rosenthal E. I had to help them. Good Housekeeping. 30 July 2012.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© People's Medical Publishing House Co. Ltd. and Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2017 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.BeijingChina
  2. 2.National Centre for AIDS/STD Control and Prevention, Chinese Centre for Disease Control and PreventionBeijingChina

Personalised recommendations