Mothers who had a caesarean section at a Melbourne hospital in the last three years may have been exposed to hepatitis B.
An investigation has been launched by The Department of Health after an unidentified healthcare worker was recently diagnosed with hepatitis B. It is thought more than 650 patients at the hospital have been put at risk at contracting the infectious disease.
Addressing a media pack yesterday, Victoria’s Acting Chief Health Officer, Dr Roscoe Taylor said that as a precautionary measure 654 patients were being contact directly by the Health Department to arrange for Hepatitis B testing.
Only patients who have been contacted directly by the Health Department need to take any action and Dr. Taylor said the hospital involved would not be named.
In an interview with The Herald Sun, one mother said, “The only procedure I’ve ever had was an emergency C-section three years ago … I know exactly which hospital it was,” she said. “The Health Department wouldn’t give me any specific information about who it could have been, but told me to go straight away and get a blood test. Now I’m devastated, waiting for my results, I haven’t stopped crying and I can’t sleep.”
The Age is reporting that 150 people have already responded to the request for testing and so far there have not been any reports of patients contracting hepatitis B from the worker involved.
If you are needing information or support with hepatitis B and hepatitis C contact Hepatitis Victoria’s Infoline on 1800 703 003.
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