Hep C Article

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UPMC said today that the reason it shut down its live kidney donor transplant program was that a patient recently received a kidney from a donor who was hepatitis C positive.

The revelation prompted UPMC late Monday to voluntarily suspend the program until a thorough review can be completed by the United Network for Organ Sharing, the agency that oversees the nation's transplant centers.

"We have voluntarily postponed currently scheduled living donor kidney cases until UNOS can complete a review of a situation we discovered in one isolated case, which we self-reported to UNOS," UPMC spokeswoman Jennifer Yates said today in a statement. "The specific case involved a kidney transplant recipient who received a kidney from a donor who was hepatitis C positive. This temporary suspension of the program allows us to thoroughly evaluate our protocols and donor screening processes to reassure our patients that they receive the very highest standards of care. We fully anticipate a resumption of cases in the very near term. We strive for excellence in our clinical care with the well-being of patients as our highest priority."

In addition to UNOS' review, the state Department of Health and the Allegheny County Department of Health are both planning to investigate the error, officials with the state and county said.
How hepatitis A is spread
The hepatitis A virus (HAV) is found in the faeces of someone infected with the virus. It only takes a tiny amount of faeces getting inside another person’s mouth to cause hepatitis A infection. Personal hygiene, such as careful hand washing, can minimise the risk of the virus being passed on.

HAV is a common infection in many parts of the world where sanitation and sewage infrastructure is poor. Often people become infected with HAV by eating or drinking contaminated food or water.

Hepatitis A is also classed as a sexually…...

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