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nurses infected with HCV

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by caymen caymen (New Member) New Member

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I would like input on an issue at my hospital. What are your views on a working nurse that tested positive for HCV?

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Dorito has 35 years experience as a ASN, RN and specializes in Med-Surg, , Home health, Education.

311 Posts; 5,075 Profile Views

I guess as long as she follows universal precautions it shouldn't be an issue. We take care of patients that have lots of other diseases....we can't pick and choose those that aren't contagious or communicable.

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Hoozdo has 15 years experience as a ADN and specializes in ICU, Research, Corrections.

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I would like input on an issue at my hospital. What are your views on a working nurse that tested positive for HCV?

My view is that she is no different than any other nurse. What are the chances that the nurse will stab herself with a needle then inject the patient with the same needle? Will the nurse have rough bloody sex with the patient? :uhoh3:

Why is it an issue?

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14 Posts; 1,147 Profile Views

It's an issue because it is me. I am a nurse on a med surg floor, nobody knows but I am about to enter treatment and not sure how to handle my employer. I'm not sure of the laws in my state that may protect or hurt me (SC). I'm looking for feedback, negative and/or positive from others.

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Hoozdo has 15 years experience as a ADN and specializes in ICU, Research, Corrections.

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It's an issue because it is me. I am a nurse on a med surg floor, nobody knows but I am about to enter treatment and not sure how to handle my employer. I'm not sure of the laws in my state that may protect or hurt me (SC). I'm looking for feedback, negative and/or positive from others.

Oh, I see. It is me too :smackingf

I think you biggest problem may be handling the side effects of treatment during work. PM me if you like for more advice.

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NPinWCH has 15 years experience and specializes in Family NP, OB Nursing.

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I work with a nurse with HCV, it's a non-issue. She has had two rounds of treatment without clearing the infection. She's getting ready to start some new drugs. The only problem she has is like Hoozdo said, the side effects. Both times she has had to max out her FMLA to deal with the effects...it just zaps her strength and bottoms out her WBC.

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Kashia has 13 years experience as a ASN, LVN and specializes in Med-Surg, Home Health, LTC.

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I am also Hep C+.

The CDC has guidelines for these issues should anyone ask or have unfounded concern.

It is safe to work and it is not a reportable disease. It is at your discretion to speak about this with anyone at work or elsewhere.

I have always practiced on a need to know basis or relative to conversation, for example, like this post.

Concerning treatment, I opted to live healthy, do cleanses take supplements and herbs and had much

improvement over viral load and LFTS normal, feel great. Just anther option.

If you consider interferon getting genotyped will help you decide if you are a good candidate. Wish the best.

Be Well, Kashia

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Hoozdo has 15 years experience as a ADN and specializes in ICU, Research, Corrections.

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I also would get a liver biopsy for a baseline before ever doing Interferon. If you are a genotype 1A or 1B, I would advise against treatment. Anyone can feel free to PM me with questions. Been there, done that, have liver transplant scars instead of a T-shirt. :lol2:

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Wow I really didn't expect such quick replies and support. I found out 2 1/2 years ago by donating blood when I was in nursing school, second career for me. I am 45. At the time I did tell the dean at school who encouraged me to go on. I squeaked by during my pre employment physical because I had already been vaccinated for Hep A&B. They didn't bother to take my blood and I failed to check the little Hepatitis box on the application. So for that reason I am not sure if they have any recourse against me should they get scared. So many nurses and doctors I know are so ignorant and prejiduce about HCV.

I had a biopsy 2 years ago, no liver damage. My enzymes are still perfect, no effects yet and it seems that I must have had this for 20+ years. I take milk thisthle every day. I am geno 2. Considering that and the fact that I am a mom and a nurse I will start treatment in the fall. I really would love to go into OB or peds and I don't feel that I should with this disease looming.

I have been a good employee for 1 1/2 years. I love the people I work with including the management. But you just never know how people will react. Every now and then I see a news clip on a healthcare worker with HCV or HIV and chaos breaks loose. I know in my heart that I cannot transmit this to anyone else but at the same time I feel sooo dishonest for not at least telling my boss.

Have any of you sought treatment and if so how did you handle work?

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Hoozdo has 15 years experience as a ADN and specializes in ICU, Research, Corrections.

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I had a biopsy 2 years ago, no liver damage. My enzymes are still perfect, no effects yet and it seems that I must have had this for 20+ years. I take milk thisthle every day. I am geno 2. Considering that and the fact that I am a mom and a nurse I will start treatment in the fall. I really would love to go into OB or peds and I don't feel that I should with this disease looming.

If you have normal enzymes and a good biopsy, why torture yourself? You do have a good genotype to treat, but why?

I have been on treatment twice. The second time was post-transplant - genotype 1B. It took one year to go negative and I treated one year BEYOND going negative. It was a waste of 2 years of my life.....two weeks after stopping the HCV was back again. It wasn't an easy time for me...my therapy also included Procrit and Neupogen. Drug bill was close to 4K a month :angryfire my insurer didn't like it much either.

If I were you, I would get another biopsy. If it shows no damage, do not treat!

This is not medical advice :lol2:

This is nursing advice

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anc33 has 7 years experience and specializes in Oncology, Research.

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I have personally worked with two nurses that are HCV+. Both went through treatment and one had success. You could see how drained they were on their face but both were strong through the process. It is great that you are type II, much better cure rate, I think over 80%. Being a woman also gives one a better shot at clearing the virus. I know that there are some great drugs coming down the pipeline. Best of luck with whatever you choose.

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