Surgical Tech Sentenced to 20 Years in Prison in Hepatitis C Case

A surgical tech nurse has been convicted and sentenced for infection 3 dozen patients and placing countless more in danger for hepatitis C because of her shoddy medical practices. Kristen Diane Parker, infected with hepatitis C, exposed numerous unsuspecting patients to the blood borne disease. Hepatitis C is a potentially deadly disease that attacks the liver which can lead to cirrhosis or cancer of the liver. Hepatitis C is spread by contact with infected body fluids, especially blood.

Parker was originally charged with 21 counts of product tampering and 21 counts of obtaining a controlled substance through deceit. The charges stem from Parker stealing the drug Fentanyl. Parker stole the drug for her own use and would replace the used syringes with saline solution after injecting herself, potentially exposing other patients.

The surgical tech admitted to prosecutors that she had indeed stolen the Fentanyl in order to feed her drug addiction. Fentanyl is a strong narcotic pain medication used to treat surgical patients. During her interview with prosecutors, Parker said that she intended to replace the used syringes with clean syringes but became confused and placed the used syringes back in circulation for patient use. The used syringes were filled with saline rather than the prescribed medication.