Sunday, October 17, 2010

Legal Secretary Advocates for Safe Injection Practices

Nevada legal secretary Karen Morrow underwent a routine colonoscopy and endoscopy in 2008, but the consequences were anything but routine. She and many other patients contracted hepatitis C due to the alleged unsafe injection practices of the physician’s clinic. The physician and two of his clinic workers have since been indicted on felony criminal charges involving patient neglect.

Morrow became so sick that she lost her job of 16 years and suffered through 54 weeks of debilitating treatment, including interferon. She told the Las Vegas Review-Journal, “I literally couldn’t get out of bed much of the time. I couldn’t even lift my arms above my head.”

Today Morrow has no signs of the virus, is employed as a legal secretary at Santoro, Diggs, Walch, Kearney, Holley & Thompson in Las Vegas – and was the featured speaker at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. last week, kicking off the 2010 International Infection Prevention Week and raising awareness of safe injection practices at health facilities. Morrow urges people “to support the One and Only Campaign in Nevada, which stresses one needle, one syringe, used only one time.”

Kudos to Morrow for using her own experience to help prevent others from contracting hepatitis B, hepatitis C and HIV due to lapses in basic infection control practices – many resulting from reuse of syringes.

Per the One and Only Campaign website, patients should ask their healthcare providers the following questions before receiving an injection:
  1. Will there be a new needle, new syringe, and a new vial for this procedure or injection?
  2. Can you tell me how you prevent the spread of infections in your facility?
  3. What steps are you taking to keep me safe?

Source: Las Vegas Review-Journal

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Karen Morrow is pictured with her husband Scott (in the background) and her dogs, Balto and Molly.

3 comments:

  1. This is a great article! Great to see people coming out and talking about HepC. Great blog, I will stop back.

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  2. What a great article about HepC. It is really great to see people being so open about it after all these yrs. More awareness and more funding to stop this disease. To think after all these yrs people are still getting the disease through careless acts.
    Great blog!

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  3. Thanks, guys, I learn so many new things from legal support staffers who make the news. I had no idea that injection practices could be so unsafe - or affected so many patients.

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