Scissors Image Credit: Flickr/James Bowe

A mother stabbed her child with a pair of scissors, inflicting 90 cuts on the baby's face. The attack is believed to have happened after the baby bit his mother, while she was breastfeeding him. The incident took place in Xuzhou, in eastern China's Jiangsu Province.

A report in the Mail Online says Xiao Bao, eight months old, lives with his mother and two uncles, who earn a living by recycling rubbish. Bao needed about 100 stitches after being stabbed by his mother, whom authorities say has no mental illness or the history of one.

The bleeding baby was left in the front yard at his home, presumably to die. According to the Mail, Bao was discovered lying in a pool of blood by one of his uncles, who immediately rushed him to the nearest hospital.

After the incident, people in the neighbourhood asked local authorities to remove the child from the family's care but they were refused. The authorities said Bao's two uncles were now his guardians.

A study in The Lancet suggests that only one in 12 Chinese accept they have a need to consult a mental health care professional. And, earlier this year, a number of new laws were implemented in the country, one of which was a mental health law, which took 27 years to draft.

Local news agency Xinhua reports the new law requires consent from the patient before treatment is administered; exceptions can be made if the patient is believed to pose a threat either to themselves or others. The law also asks medical institutions to respect their patients' dignity and their right for voluntary discharge. Privacy of diagnosis and treatment has also been emphasised.

However, despite the implementation of this new law, a study by a team of researchers led Gonghuan Yang (published in The Lancet in June) suggests China will face "many challenges during the implementation, continuing assessment, and subsequent revision of its new mental health law".