Poudre Valley Hospital warns some ICU patients of possible hepatitis C exposure

FORT COLLINS, Colo. - Poudre Valley Hospital has mailed letters to 210 patients recommending that they be tested for hepatitis C.

"A former employee suspected of diverting prescription painkillers may have put some patients at risk for exposure to hepatitis C," according to Kevin Unger, PVH president and CEO.

The letters went to adults treated in the Intensive Care Unit between September 1, 2011, and August 28, 2012.

Hospital officials said there have been no reported cases of patients acquiring hepatitis C at the hospital, but they issued the recommendation to ensure the patients are safe.

"Some of the diverted medications were injectable narcotics that we believe were headed for the trash," Unger said. "We don’t have any evidence that patients were harmed or infected with hepatitis C, but we want to be sure of that."

The employee has since been fired, according to PVH.

Hepatitis C is a blood-borne disease that affects the liver. Someone must have contact with an infected person’s blood to contract the disease. Learn more:  www.pvhs.org/hep-c.

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