Six hepatitis deaths brings $16K fine for assisted living center

By: July 27th, 2011 Email This Post Print This Post

The assisted living center where six residents died from hepatitis B has been fined $16,000, by the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, reports, July 23.

An investigation by the state health department linked the deaths to unsafe blood glucose monitoring practices at Glen Care of Mount Olive, NC. “Monitors were sometimes stored together, weren’t labeled with residents’ names and weren’t disinfected after each use, according to investigators,” reports Two other residents also contracted hepatitis B from reused devices.

Officials from Glen Care disagree with the finding of the investigation, suggesting that the hepatitis infections are from outside sources or from residents sharing drinks or having unprotected sex, according to the report.

The assisted living center has 60 days to appeal or pay the fine.

For guidance on preventing unsafe injection practices with blood glucose monitors, see Infection Control and Safe Injection Practices: Diabetes Care on the OSHA Healthcare Advisor Tools page.

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So just how was the Hep B transmitted? I find it very hard to believe that it was the monitors. They typically don’t come in contact with the patient, the strip does, and so does the fingerstick needle. So were they reusing fingerstick needles that are single use items? This would make more sense to me than the monitor being the problem.

By stacy Dotts on August 3rd, 2011 at 5:19 pm

Please send the study regarding using the same monitor. Our nurses often question why they have to wipe them. The blood is on the strip and inside the machine.

Whats the rationele?

By David LaHoda on August 3rd, 2011 at 5:56 pm

OSHA Healthcare Advisor doesn’t always have access to the full studies, but it often provide in the posts enough information for you to connect to or acquire the full study, which I suggest you do if you have specific questions about the findings.


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