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3,700 patients in the surgical center & # 39; live in fear & # 39; after the risk of HIV

The Passaic County couple are looking for class action status for a lawsuit against the state operations center that closes after failing to comply with safety regulations.

The state closed the HealthPlus Surgery Center in Saddle Brook and ordered them to tell 3,700 patients who had been treated at the center from January to September 7 that they might have been exposed to HIV and hepatitis.

Letter encourage patients to look for tests for HIV, the incurable virus that causes AIDS, and hepatitis B and C, which can be devastating, "because of the abundance of caution" as a result of "deviations in infection control in sterilization / cleaning devices. injection of drugs. "The center says it pays for the test.

No known infection. But Lauren and Julio Marrero, from Bloomingdale, filed a lawsuit Friday at the High Court in Hackensack demanding the facility with negligence.

The lawsuit said all ex-patients and their partners "are now living in fear of exposure to these potentially fatal viruses." patient from the facility.

The facility, which has been reopened, blames irregularities on two dismissed employees.

State inspectors said the facility was not a true disinfection instrument, some of which looked rusty. And they found a stretcher with a wet, stained red sheet, according to, who obtained a copy of the country's health report.

The lawsuit said the facility was negligent in maintaining proper sterilization and staff supervision.

Complaints say the plaintiff "has suffered and continues to suffer physical pain, emotional sadness, distress, fear, anxiety, humiliation, shame and other physical and emotional injuries and damage (both economic and non-economic), as well as permanent disability, in the past, now and future. "This complaint also makes claims of partner negligence and claims to seize the spouse" community, consortium, friendship and service. "

The central nursing director resigned the day before the facility was closed. Mark Manigan, a Roseland lawyer who represented the center, declined to say whether it was related to complaints and closure. He said the central administrator was not expected to resign.

As part of the corrective plan implemented with the reopening of the center, HealthPlus must conduct quarterly infection control audits and sterilization audits every six months.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Sergio Bichao is a digital editor's representative at New Jersey 101.5. Send news tips to him: Call 609-359-5348 or email

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