The Definition of Fear: Hep C from the local Endoscopy Clinic here in Vegas
Posted Sep 14 2008 3:04pm
I'm sure you all heard about it on the national news today. We woke up to the local news breaking the story of a local Endoscopy clinic passing along Hep C for sure to 6 people. The local health dept tracked three acute cases of Hep C back to the same day in that same clinic and then really investigated. So far they've found three other cases from that clinic and they sent out 40,000 letters to people recommending they get tested for Hep C, A, and E (E?) and HIV.
They've only linked Hep C so far, but still. I'd be pissed off and freaked out if one of those letters came to me, especially with the circumstances. They found that anesthesia needles were being reused and/or med vials being reused, contaminating blood back and forth between who knows how many patients and for how long. They're going back all the way to patients who received services in 2004 and forward because they can connect one of the Hepatitis cases to 2005.
You know, I'm not much into conspiracy theories but if they found three acute hep cases from the same day, three more from different times, and they're looking at 40,000 people over 3 years....that doesn't sound like one isolated employee who's being sloppy. To me, that sounds like a very negligent policy of cutting cost and corners on meds.
Can you imagine getting one of those letters?
Oh, and the clinic's not paying for the testing, the individuals are responsible for obtaining and paying for their own testing from their primary care physicians. Maybe it's a small price to pay for peace of mind, but again, if that news came to me, I'd be hot about it. How about you?