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IHS patients in Arizona potentially exposed to deadly viruses

Patients at an Indian Health Service facility in Arizona may have been exposed to deadly viruses, KSWT-TV reports.

Staff at the Fort Yuma Hospital weren't properly sterilizing instruments used in wound care procedures. As a result, 48 known patients may have been exposed to HIV, hepatitis B and hepatitis C.

"The concern is that if somebody in that cohort of patients that would have had any of those viruses then the other patients in that group would have been exposed to that person through the instrument that wasn't sterilized," Dr. Charles Reidhead told KSWT.

IHS has informed the Cocopah Tribe and the Quechan Nation about the issue. Documents obtained by KSWT say the Quechan Nation is accusing the agency of a cover-up, which Reidhead denies.

Get the Story:
Ft. Yuma Hospital patients possibly exposed to deadly viruses (KSWT-TV 10/4)
Tribal patients may have been exposed to infections (The Yuma Sun 10/5)