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St Louis VA Hospital May Have Exposed 1,800 Vets to HIV

Copied from FOX News

St Louis VA Hospital May Have Exposed 1,800 Vets to HIV

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

ST. LOUIS, Mo. — More than 1,800 veterans may have been exposed to several potentially deadly viruses including HIV after they received dental work at a St. Louis-area VA hospital, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.

On Tuesday, The John Cochran VA Medical Center began sending out letters to the veterans who were treated at the facility during a 13-month period ending in March. The letter said the dental equipment “may not have been cleaned properly.”

Although the agency said the risk of “infection was extremely low,” the medical center is still offering free blood tests to screen for HIV as well as hepatitis B and C.

"We deeply regret that this situation occurred and we assure you that we are taking all the necessary steps to make certain that testing is offered quickly and results communicated timely," the letter said.

According to VA spokeswoman, Laurie Tranter, the problem was discovered during an inspection that took place in mid March.

Click here to read more from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.