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Olean hospital reports it may have re-used insulin pens

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Buffalo: Olean hospital reports it may have re-used insulin pens
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Nearly two weeks after it was revealed a Buffalo VA Hospital may have misused insulin pens, a hospital in Cattaraugus County has alerted close to 2,000 patients that they may been a part of a similar problem. YNN's Mark Goshgarian tells us what officials are doing to address the misuse.

OLEAN, N.Y. — ''Based on the recent activity about potential insulin pen misuse at the Veterans Hospital in Buffalo, we initiated our own review of insulin pen use here at the Hospital," said Timothy Finan, Olean General Hospital President and CEO.

That internal review found Olean General Hospital might have also reused insulin pens.

The news comes just two weeks after a VA hospital in Buffalo announced more than 700 patients might be at risk because of insulin pen misuse.

Olean General Hospital sent out letters Thursday morning notifying more than 1,900 patients of its situation.

"It's a significant number, absolutely, and you know, we're concerned about the kind of anxiety and the upset, that this letter will you know, cause them, feel very bad about that," said Finan.

While each pen gets a new sterile needle before its used, the concern centers around the pen's reservoir, where there's a slight risk of contamination.

Olean General Hospital President and CEO Timothy Finan says the reuse may have occurred between November 2009 to early last week.

He suggests anyone who received insulin at the hospital during that time get tested for hepatitis B, hepatitis C and HIV at no charge.

"We have yet to identify a single patient on whom this might have occurred, and obviously no indication or evidence of any infections of any sort, but we're being you know, very cautious and proactive," said Finan.

The hospital has set up a call center to answer questions or set up appointments. It's open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m., and the number is 1-888-980-1220.

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