Doctor May Have Infected Thousands

Let me give you a scenario whereas a healthy 40-year-old woman goes to the doctor to get what is to be a routine examination. However, this wasn’t your normal doctors office-this is an office that doesn’t use safe practices when it comes to their patients health. To continue the scenario, this young woman heads to another local clinic six months later to get her annual physical and during that exam she has her blood drawn. Days later she gets a phone call from the clinic informing her that she has the deadly HIV Virus. This woman is married and her husband is healthy, she doesn’t cheat on her husband and hasn’t had any blood transfusions.  How in the world did she get HIV?

It pains me to tell you that she was infected with HIV by of all people, her doctor. Last week the story broke in Las Vegas, NV that a local clinic “Endoscopy Center of Southern Nevada” may have infected over 40,000 people with hepatitis C, hepatitis B and HIV. This story quickly hit national news and has obviously alarmed thousands of people in the Las Vegas community and surrounding areas. You can’t imagine the anxiety of all those patients who visited this facility.

Now all the questions surrounding this horrific incident begin. Who knew what and when did they know it? Did these Doctors order their staff to reuse needles? Why in the world would a medical professional expose so many people to possible disease? How can we protect ourselves from these practices in the future? What is our government going to do in order to ensure that this doesn’t happen again, and can our government really protect us from rouge physicians?

It may take some time in order to answer many of these questions, but the feelings most of us have are pretty straightforward. Should these doctors be arrested and imprisoned for their actions? My answer is, YES, absolutely they should be arrested and prosecuted to the full extent of the law. Their medical licenses should be revoked and they should never have the ability to obtain a business license in Nevada again. I have to commend Mayor Oscar Goodman and the rest of the Las Vegas City Council for quickly revoking their business license in the city. I have no remorse for these doctors and their staff. There is one thing we should be able to count on when we go to our doctor’s office. We should know that they are looking out for our best interests, and that they are taking every means necessary to follow strict guidelines when it comes to possible contaminated materials, i.e., needles. It is now up to government and regulatory boards to make a strong example out of these doctors. We must not see another case like this again-our health is much too important.

Nathan Taylor

Tuesday, March 4th, 2008 Nevada

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