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Public Health Response – Situation Update 15

TULSA, OK – [May 16, 2013, 2:35 p.m. CST] – As testing continues for patients of W. Scott Harrington’s dental surgical practice, the Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) and Tulsa Health Department (THD) have a fifth round of results to report. 

Of those patients of the Harrington dental surgical practice who have been tested thus far, only one new case of hepatitis B was confirmed since the last Situation Update.  Thus, five patients have tested positive for hepatitis B, 70 for hepatitis C and three for HIV. 

Those persons whose tests are positive are being personally contacted and counseled about information specific to the disease for which the test was positive, and they will be directed to resources for appropriate care and follow up. If warranted, testing will be recommended for a spouse or partner.

To date, 3,837 people have visited county health departments throughout the state to have their blood drawn for testing as part of this public health response. An unknown number of persons have sought testing through their private health care provider. The Oklahoma State Department of Health’s Public Health Laboratory has completed testing for 3,899 persons as of 5:00 p.m. Wednesday.  The discrepancy is due to the lab also testing people from other states, private physicians and local county health departments.


Oklahoma Medical Reserve Corps
The Tulsa Health Department requested staffing assistance for the testing clinic from the Oklahoma Medical Reserve Corps, the state’s only medical and public health volunteer program. One hundred eighty-five OKMRC volunteers to date have stepped forward to help in every facet of the testing clinic, including operating the phone bank, drawing blood, non-medical roles and an on-site psychologist. THD would like to extend our appreciation and gratitude to those who have volunteered.

Among those OKMRC volunteers who have assisted with the response is Dr. Michael Haugh, who was recently announced as the 2013 Outstanding MRC Responder by the Division of the Civilian Volunteer Medical Reserve Corps at the national level. Dr. Haugh will be recognized during an upcoming seasonal leadership and training summit in Leesburg, VA.


Screening Appointments and Patient Information Hotline
In the Tulsa metropolitan area, screening continues weekdays at the North Regional Health and Wellness Center, 5635 N. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. Patients are advised to call the North Regional Health and Wellness Center directly at (918)595-4380 to schedule an appointment.  Walk-ins will still be accepted, however appointments are recommended in order to minimize wait times. 

Anyone who was a patient at Dr. W. Scott Harrington’s dental practice should contact the Patient Information hotline (918)595-4500 with any questions.  English- and Spanish-speaking public health representatives will be available during normal business hours from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. 

Current and former patients of the Harrington practice who live elsewhere in the state should contact their local county health department to make an appointment to have their blood drawn for testing.

Further information on the screenings and results from this public health response will be included in Situation Updates on our website.

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