Nevada: Six Medical Offices Raided in Probe Into Hepatitis C Outbreak
Posted by pozlife on March 12, 2008
March 11, 2008
Officials seized patient records and other documents at six valley clinics Monday as part of a joint criminal investigation into a hepatitis C outbreak. The sites were all affiliated the Gastroenterology Center of Nevada (GCN) and include the Endoscopy Center of Southern Nevada (ECSN), where a state health investigation found at least six patients were infected when nurse anesthetists reused syringes and medicine vials. Participating in the raids were the FBI, the Las Vegas police, and investigators for the state attorney general and Department of Health and Human Services.
“We wanted to ensure that records weren’t destroyed,” said Deputy Chief Kathy Suey, who manages the city police Criminal Intelligence Section.
Authorities first searched ECSN, 700 Shadow Lane, and the Desert Shadow Endoscopy Center, 4275 Burnham Ave. Both facilities house an office of GCN. Officials then searched the GCN sites at 3150 N. Tenaya Way, 5915 S. Rainbow Blvd., 2610 W. Horizon Ridge Parkway in Henderson and 1815 E. Lake Meade Blvd. in North Las Vegas.
Police are expected to focus on possible medical negligence, and state and federal officials are looking into possible insurance fraud, Suey said.
The FBI has posted its “most seasoned agents” to the investigation, which will cover “anything and everything,” said Special Agent Joseph Dickey. “It’s a complex case, but that’s our specialty at the FBI.”
By Friday, police plan to announce how patients may obtain copies of their medical records. In the meantime, investigators will begin perusing billing records before deciding which angle each agency will pursue.