- The Washington Times - Friday, March 27, 2009

CHATTANOOGA, TENN. (AP) - Veterans Affairs officials say 16 patients exposed to contaminated equipment at its medical facilities have tested positive for viral infections, including hepatitis. VA spokeswoman Katie Roberts said Friday that 10 colonoscopy patients from the VA medical center in Murfreesboro, Tenn., tested positive for hepatitis. She said six patients from a VA clinic in Augusta, Ga., tested positive for unspecified viral infections.

The number of reported infections could rise. Roberts says the department doesn’t yet have results from most of more than 10,000 veterans warned to get blood tests because they could have been exposed to contamination. Patients at a medical center in Miami also were urged to get tested.

All three sites failed to properly sterilize equipment between treatments.

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