Veteranclaims’s Blog

July 30, 2010

Veterans Exposed to Contaminated Dental Equipment, 4 Test Positive

Full Article at: 4 positive tests of St. Louis vets

By JIM SALTER (AP) – 1 hour ago

ST. LOUIS — Four veterans treated at the St. Louis VA Medical Center’s dental clinic have tested positive for hepatitis, but further testing will be necessary to determine if inadequately sterilized dental equipment is to blame, VA officials said Friday.

The Department of Veterans Affairs provided test results to The Associated Press after repeated requests over the past two weeks. The VA has drawn criticism from some members of congressional delegations in Missouri and Illinois for taking too long to release information on how many veterans tested positive.”

“Of 1,022 veterans tested and notified of results, two tested positive for hepatitis B and two for hepatitis C, the VA said. None have tested positive for HIV, the virus that causes AIDS.”

“Two Missouri congressmen, Democrat Russ Carnahan of St. Louis and Republican Roy Blunt of Springfield, said they were saddened to learn that four veterans were ill. Carnahan said he still had concerns about how the VA is handling test results.

“If there were any individuals who tested positive, even if that test was preliminary, the VA should not have kept them in the dark,” Carnahan said. “They should have been notified immediately so they could take precautions to protect their spouses and loved ones.”

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