According to hospital officials, during the previous two years, incorrect delivery of IV medicine may have exposed nearly 450 patients at a Massachusetts hospital to HIV and hepatitis.
Patients undergoing endoscopies—a technique in which a doctor inserts a tube-like equipment into the body for examination—were potentially exposed at Salem Hospital, the hospital stated in a statement on Thursday. The hospital withheld more information regarding the potential mode of exposure.
A hospital representative sent an email to CNN stating that Salem Hospital has alerted all patients who may have been exposed and tested individuals for HIV and hepatitis B, and hepatitis C—all of which are “standard tests for a potential exposure of this kind.”
The hospital stated in the statement that “there is no evidence to date of any infections resulting from this incident.” “We’ve found that there is incredibly little chance of infection for patients as a result of this incident. We offer our heartfelt apologies to everyone affected.
Since learning of the possible exposure earlier this year, the hospital has offered free examinations and established a hotline manned by clinicians to address inquiries.
In a statement to CNN, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health stated that it is aware of the possible exposure and that it has determined the risk of infection to be extremely low.
Hundreds of patients potentially exposed to HIV and hepatitis at Mass. hospital
In order “to manage the situation,” the hospital collaborated with the state public health agency.
According to the government, “there has not yet been any evidence of infections resulting from these exposures identified by the ongoing investigation.”
Sharing needles, syringes, and other injectable supplies as well as having sex can spread the virus that causes hepatitis B and hepatitis C, which are liver illnesses.
At a surgical facility in Saddle Brook, New Jersey, more than 3,000 patients ran the danger of contracting HIV and hepatitis B, or hepatitis C in 2018. Following an examination by the New Jersey Department of Health, it was discovered that staff members at the HealthPlus Surgery Centre were not properly sterilising medical equipment and cleaning it.
Additionally, a 2008 report from the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services linked an endoscopy centre in Las Vegas to an outbreak of acute hepatitis C. According to an investigation, patients were exposed to risk when improper injection practises were used.