KOFU, Yamanashi Pref. – The Kofu District Court on Tuesday ordered the city to pay 1 million yen in damages to the parents of a deceased Thai woman after a municipal hospital refused to operate on her because she was infected with HIV.
According to the ruling, the woman fractured her back in a fall from the second floor of a building in December 1992, but the Kofu Municipal Hospital did not operate on her after a blood test showed she was HIV-positive.
She was left disabled and returned to her home country before dying of AIDS-related complications in 1997 at the age of 26.
Presiding Judge Ryoichi Shimbori said the refusal should be considered “an abdication of responsibility as a doctor,” while denying that a causal connection between the woman’s disability and the refusal of treatment was highly probable.
During the trial, the hospital claimed it had refused to operate on her because it did not have any experts on AIDS and was not equipped with a manual on the prevention of AIDS infection.
The suit was filed in 1994.
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