The criminal, federal and a health district investigation makes progress as the health district says they can genetically link four of the hepatitis C cases to one person on September 21, 2007. Reporter Edward Lawrence talks to lawmakers about the case.More>>
The hepatitis outbreak is the largest public health crisis in Nevada state history. The Chief Deputy District Attorney prosecuting the case says there will be criminal charges and it will involve a number of defendants. Reporter Edward Lawrence has the details.More>>
The state Board of Medical Examiners filed 10-count complaints Monday against two doctors linked to a hepatitis C outbreak in southern Nevada, and the state attorney general filed motions in court to keep the doctors from practicing until the complaints are resolved.More>>
As the health district confirms another case of hepatitis C linked to the clinics said to have reused syringes and vials on patients, Metro says the criminal investigation into the crisis has hit a roadblock. Reporter Aaron Drawhorn investigated the story.More>>
The state hearing took all day and in the end, lawmakers left with several ideas on how to make sure the public's health is no longer put at risk. Reporter Melissa Duran was at the hearing and has the details.More>>
Police, patients, lawyers and investigators say they're having a lot of trouble sifting through the mountain of records seized from six medical offices affiliated with a clinic at the center of the big hepatitis C outbreak. Reporter Melissa Duran takes a closer look in her report.More>>
Patients who visited the Endoscopy Center of Southern Nevada between 2004 and 2008 were told to be tested, but the clinic has been open since 2000, leaving four more years in question. Reporter Aaron Drawhorn has the details.More>>
Cases of hepatitis have jumped by more than 400-percent in just the last few weeks. The health district reports seeing more than 150 people a day testing positive. Eyewitness News will have the latest on this story. Inside, find links and other information regarding the hepatitis scare.More>>
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Thursday, May 23 2013 9:30 AM EDT2013-05-23 13:30:09 GMT
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Thursday, May 23 2013 8:30 AM EDT2013-05-23 12:30:09 GMT
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Thursday, May 23 2013 2:00 AM EDT2013-05-23 06:00:07 GMT
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Thursday, May 23 2013 1:50 AM EDT2013-05-23 05:50:59 GMT
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With each week that passes, the Southern Nevada Health District unravels more of the medical web surrounding the Endoscopy Center of Southern Nevada. So far 40,000 people have been notified that they maybe at risk for hepatitis or HIV because of unsafe medical practices at the centers.
The health district has announced an eighth case of hepatitis, just hours before the head of the agency testified in front of a state health committee.
The man in charge of the investigation says it's only a matter of time before they link more cases of hepatitis to the clinics because of a policy to reuse syringes and single dose vials of medicine.
It's been nearly two months since the health district shut down the centers and still the investigation keeps expanding.
Hepatitis C in eight people can be linked directly back to either the Endoscopy Center of Southern Nevada on Shadow Lane or the Desert Shadow Endoscopy Center on Burnham Avenue.
Carl Ricceri had a procedure at the Burnham location. So far he is not infected.
"The doctor said you better go and get tested just to be safe," he said.
He is not part of the massive notification of 40,000 people by the health district. That notification only covers the Shadow Lane clinic. There may still be tens of thousands more who went to the Burnham clinic receiving letters to get tested for hepatitis and HIV.
"It's possible, because we have one case at the Burnham clinic. We have to get access to some records before we can go forward. It's clear something happened there, but the question is how big in scope was that problem?" said Brian Labus with the Southern Nevada Health District.
Metro Police confiscated all of the medical records for their criminal investigation. Labus says the clinics kept incomplete and in some cases false records. He thinks there will likely be more confirmed cases.
"The tip of the iceberg is the people who develop acute disease. Out of the acute disease, we get notified of a small portion of that. So it's sort of the tip of the tip of the iceberg that we know about," he said.
Ricceri says more action needs to be taken.
"We already have a list of about 10 to 13 doctors that have all been involved with these clinics. I would assume to err on the side of caution that the doctors would have had their licenses suspended," he said.
According to the Nevada Board of Medical Examiners, no doctor's licenses' have been suspended at this time, but their investigation continues.
The medical board says the doctor at the center of controversy, Dr. Dipak Desai, voluntarily agreed to stop practicing medicine.
Since the clinics are closed, the medical board says there is no imminent threat. Therefore, the board will not suspend the other doctor's medical licenses' at this time.