TULSA, OK – [June 13, 2013, 3:15 p.m. CST] – The Tulsa Health Department today announces that after nearly three months of offering free screening clinics, the final day for former patients of the W. Scott Harrington’s dental surgical practice to receive free testing for hepatitis B, hepatitis C and HIV infection will be Friday, June 28. While this is the last day for free screening clinics, the epidemiological investigation will continue.
In the Tulsa metropolitan area, screenings will continue weekdays through June 28 at the North Regional Health and Wellness Center, 5635 N. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. Any former patient of the W. Scott Harrington’s dental surgical practice who received a notification letter in the mail and has not yet been tested is advised to call the North Regional Health and Wellness Center directly at (918) 595-4380 to schedule an appointment.
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 before June 28.
Patients with negative test results who had dental procedures in the Harrington clinic between Sept. 20, 2012, and March 20, 2013, were recommended to return for follow-up testing at least six months past the last dental clinic date at the Harrington practice. Those patients will still receive follow-up testing at no cost. Screenings after June 28 will be provided Monday-Thursdays by appointment only.
On March 28, public health officials advised they were notifying current and former patients of the practice that they may have been exposed to blood-borne viruses at Harrington’s Tulsa and Owasso offices. Health officials recommended these patients have their blood drawn for testing for hepatitis B, hepatitis C and HIV infection at free screening clinics established at the Tulsa Health Department, Oklahoma City-County Health Department and other county health departments in the state.
To date, 3,938 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 4,033 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.
The Oklahoma State Department of Health and Tulsa Health Department have no additional positive results to report since the last situation update.
Of those patients of the Harrington dental surgical practice who have been tested thus far, 73 patients have tested positive for hepatitis C, five for hepatitis B 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.
Further information on the screenings and results from this public health response will be included in Situation Updates on our website.