|
The Steuben Courier Advocate
  • Corning Hospital Guthrie faces suit over reused syringes

  • Fourteen people who were potentially exposed to communicable diseases while patients at Corning Hospital are suing the facility, its parent company and an unidentified nurse who reportedly reused saline syringes on as many as 236 people.??

    • email print
  • Fourteen people who were potentially exposed to communicable diseases while patients at Corning Hospital are suing the facility, its parent company and an unidentified nurse who reportedly reused saline syringes on as many as 236 people.??
    The suit, which seeks unspecified monetary damages, was filed Monday morning in state Supreme Court in Chemung County. The lawsuit contains 14 plaintiffs, “but there are certain to be more added,” said Elmira attorney Adam Gee, who filed the suit.??
    The suit names as defendants Corning Hospital, Guthrie Health — the hospital’s parent company — and Jane Doe, the nurse. The lawsuit uses Jane Doe because “we think we know who (the nurse) is, but we don’t have confirmation,” Gee said.??
    The 14 plaintiffs were among 236 Corning Hospital patients who were potentially exposed to communicable diseases by a nurse who reportedly reused singleuse saline syringes at the hospital from Oct. 15-Jan. 29.
    After learning of the protocol breach – hospital officials said they were tipped off by one of the nurse’s coworkers – the hospital notified the nurse’s patients and urged them to undergo testing.??
    Hospital officials said the patients were possibly exposed to HIV and Hepatitis B and C, though the risk of infection was very low.??
    Carolyn Handrick, ??Guthrie’s public relations manager, said testing will take up to a year, so it isn’t yet known whether anyone contracted a disease via the reused syringes.
    ??“At this point, we just continue to encourage all patients who received notification to continue to get follow-up testing,” Handrick said. Testing is being paid for by Guthrie.??
    Gee said the lawsuit does not allege any of the plaintiffs fell ill as a result of the nurse’s actions “at this time.”??
    “Regardless if anyone is ultimately diagnosed as having contracted a communicable disease ... these people are scared,” Gee said. “They’re scared for their loved ones, scared for themselves.”
    ??The nurse was fired after hospital officials learned she broke infection- control protocol. The syringes she reused were needleless and were not inserted into bodies. Rather, saline syringes are used to flush IV tubing before and after medication is administered.??
    Patients of the nurse who want more information on the lawsuit should email corningsyringeinfo@ zifflaw.com.
      • calendar