Kansas hospital notifying patients of possible infections

07/17/2013 10:51 AM

07/17/2013 5:18 PM

There should be no excuse for more than 240 patients in a Kansas hospital possibly being exposed to hepatitis C, hepatitis B, HIV and possibly other diseases because the scope in colonoscopies was improperly sanitized.

Neosho Memorial Regional Medical Center in Chanute, Kan., said the potential infections occurred between January and July 3. Hospital officials said they became aware of the issue July 5, The Wichita Eagle reports.

The sanitation meltdown was described as an “oversight in training after an upgrade in equipment.” An investigation is ongoing.

Dennis Franks, CEO of the hospital, said patients were being notified by priority mail. He said infection-control specialist thought the risk of infection was low.

A colonoscopy is a exam of the large bowel and part of the small bowel, using a fiber optic camera on a flexible tube passed through the anus. The American Cancer Society recommends that men and women starting at age 50 begin having colonoscopies as an early detection method for colon polyps and cancer.

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