Sunday, May 18, 2008

It's Always About the Benjamins

According to

Hepatitus C Outbreak In Nevada

It was the re-use of syringes and vials containing medicine that caused a hepatitis C outbreak resulting in 84 patients becoming infected at two Las Vegas clinics, theAssociated Pressreports.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention was first contacted early in 2008 after two people had come down with hepatitis C, the wire service reports. CDC investigators said in their report they observed clinic employees reusing syringes to administer a sedative, and followup interviews indicated it was a common practice, the wires service reported. "This was considered the most likely mode of transmission," the report concluded.

The two clinics in question, the Endoscopy Center of Southern Nevada and the Desert Shadow Endoscopy Center -- both now shut down -- treated about 50,000 patients over this amount of time, theA.P.said. Law enforcement officials from Las Vegas, Nevada and the U.S. government are pursing criminal investigations, according to the wire service.

The doctors who ran the clinics, Dipak Desai and Eladio Carrera, have had their medical licenses suspended and paid a $50,000 fine, theA.P.reported.

Brian Labus, a senior epidemiologist with the Southern Nevada Health District, told the A.P.that the link between being treated at the clinics and contracting Hepatitis C was strong. "We know they [the 84 patients] didn't have a positive test before they went to the clinic, and now they're positive," he said.

State officials are worried that all 50,000 patients who were treated at the clinics between March, 2004 and Jan. 11, 2008 may have been exposed to Hepatitis C, which can linger in a person's system for years without symptoms. The disease can result in liver failure.

Unbelievable. These two doctors have put the health of as many as 50,000 people at risk just to save a few dollars on each one, and they get a relatively small fine in addition to losing their license to practice medicine. Big deal. Who knows how much money they pocketed by re-using syringes, and how much this is going to cost the state as these poor unfortunate victims start experiencing health problems.

What kind of sweetheart deal is this? They should lose every dime they made in the timeframe, and do some jail time. I'm sure the jail can use some "volunteer" assistants to the doctor for the next few years.


praning5254 said...

Aren't these health care workers aware of the modes of transmission of this type of diseases, especially Hepatitis? Shame on them! It's good that their clicnis/facilities were already shut down...