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Hundreds of Victoria hotel quarantine guests at risk of HIV after testing blunder

Hundreds of Victoria hotel quarantine guests at risk of HIV after testing blunder

More than 200 people who were in quarantine in Victoria are being urged to get tested for blood-borne diseases such as HIV after a mistake meant there was a risk of cross-contamination.

Hundreds of Victoria hotel quarantine guests at risk of HIV after testing blunder

According to Safer Care Victoria, 243 people who had a blood glucose level test while in hotel quarantine between 29 March and 20 August could be at risk of contracting HIV, Hepatitis B and C after the same device was used for multiple people.

Victorian health minister Martin Foley said while the needles used in the test were changed for each use, the device was not changed despite the machine being intended for use by one person.

With microscopic traces of blood able to remain within the body of the device, there is a low clinical risk of cross-contamination.

Foley said there is not any evidence of anyone contracting a blood-borne virus as a result of the stuff-up.

“I need to stress that this is, according to all the clinical advice, a very, very low risk of cross contamination but, out of an abundance of caution, Safer Care Victoria and the Alfred Hospital are doing precisely the right thing in a very risk-averse way of seeking to contact all of the people involved,” he said.

Safer Care Victoria is conducting a full review into how and why the devices were shared between multiple people.

If people are concerned they had this test – and have not yet been contacted – they can call the dedicated patient line on 1800 356 061 (8am to 8pm, seven days a week).

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