Surgery Tech Details Stealing Painkiller, Infecting Patients With Hepatitis C

A surgery technician who infected three dozen people with hepatitis C and may have exposed thousands more says she got careless while switching used syringes with ones filled with a painkiller at two Colorado hospitals.

Twenty-seven-year-old Kristen Diane Parker pleaded guilty to tampering with a consumer product and obtaining a controlled substance by deceit or subterfuge. She is to be sentenced this week to 20 years in prison.

In a videotaped interview last week, Parker described to prosecutors how she began stealing Fentanyl from operating carts at Denver's Rose Medical Center and Colorado Springs' Audubon Surgery Center, as she coped with a heroin addiction.

Parker says she injected herself with the Fentanyl, then replaced it with saline. She says she intended to put the saline in clean needles she kept in her pocket but got careless and lost track.


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