Via CBC News: Diabetes test turns into health scare for Winnipeg students. Excerpt:
About 80 students and staff at a Winnipeg school are being tested for HIV and hepatitis, after the same diabetes testing pen was used on each person.
Southeast Collegiate had invited a University of Manitoba pediatrics professor to speak to students as part of a diabetes awareness day on May 4.
As part of the professor's talk, he tested blood sugar levels on about 80 students and staff at the school's request, according to university officials.
But the professor, who is not a physician and was not authorized by the university to perform such a procedure, used a glucometer pen available at any pharmacy.
Although the professor did change the lancet — the pricking needle — between each test, and performed proper sterilization procedures, the glucometer device is not intended to be used on multiple people because there is the chance of infection.
As a result, the students and staff who underwent the tests faced a small risk of contracting blood-borne infections like HIV and hepatitis B and C.
"The device — the little pen-like device — is meant to be a single-user device. The device itself should not be shared between people," said Dr. Cheryl Rockman-Greenberg, head of the pediatrics and child health department at the university's medical school.
The lancets were changed for each person, Rockman-Greenberg said, but the professor did not realize the pen itself is not safe for use by multiple individuals.
1st test results to arrive Monday
The University of Manitoba has asked the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority (WRHA) to test everyone who took the diabetes tests for HIV and hepatitis B and C.
Earlier this week, the first group of about 50 affected students and staff were tested. They are expected to receive their results on Monday.
All 80 students and staff will have to be tested again in six months.