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KNTV Channel 13: Hepatitis C Exposure Registry Up And Running

Jun 5, 2006 | emkeach | Uncategorized | No Comments

Posted: Jun 05, 2008 4:38 PM PDT

On Thursday the Southern Nevada Health District announced it has wrapped up its investigation into the acute case of Hepatitis C.

Action News anchor Tiffani Sargent has the details.

Right now, health district officials say they know the acute case was linked to the Desert Shadow Endoscopy Center on Burnham Avenue.

They still do not know the source of the disease transmission, whether it was dirty syringes or other unsafe medical practices.

The Southern Nevada Health District cannot confirm the source of an acute case of hepatitis c.

It can say it is linked to the former Desert Shadow Endoscopy Center on Burnham Avenue.

“We have some information on the Burnham Clinic but not enough to make a solid recommendation for people to get tested. So we are encouraging people to talk to their physicians if they are concerned about their health and talk about getting tested with their physician,” said Brian Labus, senior epidemiologist for the Southern Nevada Health District.

Health officials are hoping final lab tests from the CDC will arrive soon and help pin point an exact cause.

A hepatitis c exposure registry is now in place and more than 60,000 former patients of Shadow Desert and the Endoscopy Center of Southern Nevada are encouraged to sign up.

“In collecting more information it will give us a better understanding of what occurred at the clinic,” said Brian.

Attorney Robert Murdock who represents dozens of potential victims says the registry is a day late and a dollar short.

“This registry should have been set up immediately, they knew about this for a while. Why are we waiting until June? That does not make any sense to me,” said Robert Murdock.

Murdock also wonders why the state medical board did not find it suspicious that these clinics were treating an outrageous number of people.

“Letting a clinic operate where they do procedures every seven minutes or so like building a car, we have to understand this is medicine. Somebody needs to come in and take a look at it, and see what they are doing,” said Robert.

Mayor Oscar Goodman says by setting up an advisory committee among doctors, hospitals and community members they are already talking about pro – active measures to make sure this does not happen again.

Mayor Goodman along with the health district is urging anyone who think they have been exposed to get tested immediately and enroll in the hepatitis c exposure registry.

You can call 702 – 759 – 1393 for more information.

Stay tuned to Action News as we monitor developing news around the Valley.

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