Saturday, October 15, 2011

HCV,HBV,HIV-Thousands possibly exposed to infection at Ottawa clinic

By: Andrea Janus,

Date: Saturday Oct. 15, 2011 3:13 PM PT

Ottawa Public Health is warning that as many as 6,800 people may have come into contact with hepatitis B, hepatitis C or HIV while undergoing an undisclosed procedure at an Ottawa clinic.

The city's chief medical officer, Dr. Isra Levy, announced Saturday that patients of the clinic will be notified of their potential exposure to disease early next week by letter.

The patients who will receive letters will have visited the clinic over a 10-year span dating back from spring of this year.

Jocelyne Turner, spokesperson for the City of Ottawa, said there is no indication that any patients have become infected.

However, it is the agency's duty to notify patients of their potential risk, she said.

"The risk of infection is incredibly low," Turner told in a telephone interview Saturday.

The risk to the clinic's patients of contracting hepatitis B and hepatitis C is "in the millions," she said, while the risk of contracting HIV is "one in three billion."

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