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CDC HIV/AIDS/Viral Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update

COLORADO: Hospital Tech Who Spread Hepatitis C via Drug Thefts


Denver Post (02.25.10) - Thursday, February 25, 2010

On Wednesday in a Denver courtroom, a surgery technician whose drug-theft and needle-swap scheme infected at least 18 hospital patients with hepatitis C virus was sentenced to 30 years in prison. US District Judge Robert Blackburn, who had previously rejected as too lenient a negotiated 20-year plea deal, sent Kristen Diane Parker to prison for longer than was called for in sentencing guidelines. Parker stole Fentanyl- filled syringes, injected the drug herself, then refilled the syringes with saline and allowed them to be reused on patients - even though she was told when she joined Rose Medical Center that she was probably HCV-infected. Her actions, Blackburn said, were "incomprehensible and unconscionable." In addition to the 18 confirmed cases, another eight patients are believed to have contracted HCV from Parker.


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Information in this article was accurate in February 25, 2010. The state of the art may have changed since the publication date. This material is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between you and your doctor. Always discuss treatment options with a doctor who specializes in treating HIV.