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N.H. man who infected patients with hepatitis C gets 39 years in jail

CONCORD, N.H., Dec. 2 (UPI) -- A New Hampshire hospital employee was sentenced Monday to 39 years in prison for infecting patients with hepatitis C.

David Kwiatkowski, 34, a medical technician, pleaded guilty to 14 federal charges in August, admitting he routinely stole syringes of the pain medication Fentanyl and reused the needles on patients in Exeter Hospital in Exeter.

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Thirty-two people at the hospital tested positive for matching hepatitis C strains, and patients in Maryland, where Kwiatkowski worked before arriving in New Hampshire, also contracted the virus, New Hampshire NPR reported.

Kwiatkowski also had worked at medical facilities in New York, Pennsylvania, Arizona, Kansas and Georgia and New Hampshire. He confessed to stealing Fentanyl from hospital operating rooms to feed his drug habit.

He admitted he became aware in June 2010 he was infected with hepatitis C -- a blood-borne virus that can cause serious liver damage and can be fatal.

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