From the Associated Press:
by Bill Poovey - Mar. 28, 2009 12:00 AM
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. - Viral infections, including hepatitis, have been found in 16 patients exposed to contaminated equipment at Veterans Affairs medical facilities, a department spokeswoman said Friday.
So far, 10 colonoscopy patients from the VA medical center in Murfreesboro, Tenn., have tested positive for hepatitis, VA spokeswoman Katie Roberts said. In a later e-mail, she reported six patients at the VA's ear, nose and throat clinic in Augusta, Ga., tested positive for unspecified viral infections.
Roberts stressed that the source of the infections isn't known, but she said the VA will make sure those who tested positive "get the best possible treatment."
"There's no way to scientifically, conclusively prove they contracted this due to treatment at our facility," Roberts said.
The number of reported infections could rise.
More than 10,000 veterans were warned to get blood tests because they could have been exposed to contamination at those two facilities plus a medical center in Miami. All three sites failed to properly sterilize equipment between treatments, and the problems dated back for more than five years at the Murfreesboro and Miami hospitals