More Than 700 Possibly Exposed to HIV at Buffalo VA Hospital
Because of the re-use of insulin pens at Buffalo Veterans Administration Center, more than 700 patients may have been exposed to HIV, Hepatitis B, or Hepatitis C, according to a hospital statement and other published reports.
According to the Huffington Post, authorities told the Buffalo News that there is a “very small risk” for patient’s exposure to the diseases as a result of the reuse of insulin pens that occurred between October 2010 and November 2012.
A routine pharmacy inspection uncovered the problem this past November.
VA spokeswoman, Evangeline Conley, said that needles were always changed, but an insulin pen “may have been used on more than one patient.”
The Huffington Post reports:
Insulin pens used by diabetics to inject insulin can be disposable or reusable with replaceable needles and cartridges. But according to the Institute for Safe Medication Practices, even reusable pens should not be used on more than one patient.
The Buffalo VA is now administering free blood tests to rule out any possible infections.
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