Exeter Hospital, which is at the center of a hepatitis C virus outbreak investigation, said the Associated Press account of the suspect’s work history demonstrates the need for mandatory disclosure by health care providers regarding problem employees. In July, David Kwiatkowski was arrested and charged with tampering with needles and infecting at least 31 people with HCV. According to records and interviews conducted by AP, authorities could have stopped the suspect from working after he was fired in Pittsburgh in 2008 and Arizona in 2010; however, Kwiatkowski’s lies, as well as weak regulations and poor communication, permitted him to keep working. There should be a national registry system covering all workers who provide patient care, Exeter Hospital said, and hospitals that share information about the misconduct of former workers should be protected from employment lawsuits.
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