The Chanute Tribune (08.06.2013)
The Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) reported potential HIV, hepatitis B, and hepatitis C exposure for 244 patients who had colonoscopies at Neosho Memorial Regional Medical Center (NMRMC) from January 3 to July 5, 2013. KDHE Public Information Officer Aimee Rosenow stated that during this timeframe, NMRMC did not sterilize scopes properly after colonoscopies. KDHE will not release information about any resulting infections until it completes secondary testing to eliminate false-positive or false-negative test results.
NMRMC sent notifications about the possible infections to the 244 patients on July 16 and will provide free initial and follow-up testing for the group. The potential exposure resulted from staff failure to sterilize an auxiliary water channel inside three of the six NMRMC endoscopes. The manufacturer’s cleaning instructions specified sterilizing the channel after each patient, but NMRMC’s staff did not follow instructions because colonoscopy procedures did not use that function of the endoscope.
KDHE recently reported one new hepatitis C case in Neosho County, but has not reported new HIV or hepatitis B cases. NMRMC patients seeking additional information should call KDHE at (877) 427–7317 or NMRMC at (620) 432–5493.