exeter hospital

Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center

Dartmouth-Hitchcock is working to stem the spread of scabies at its Lebanon facility. The infectious but non-fatal skin condition has been found in two people so far.

The first was a patient who arrived at the hospital in mid-August with a number of health conditions. That patient, who’s still in the hospital, wasn’t diagnosed with scabies until late September. Since then one Dartmouth staff member has been diagnosed and treated.


Two years after a cardiac technician was accused of infecting patients with hepatitis C, a handful of patients are still suing Exeter Hospital, which is pursuing its own lawsuit seeking help covering its settlement costs.

A federal court judge recently set a July 2016 trial date for the hospital's lawsuit against two staffing companies that employed David Kwiatkowski and an organization that registers medical technologists.

NHPR Staff


A lawyer for Exeter Hospital says more than two-thirds of the patients who sued after a traveling medical technician infected them with hepatitis C have settled their cases.

NHPR Staff

It’s been nearly two years since state health officials announced a major outbreak of hepatitis C at Exeter Hospital. The cause of that outbreak was what's known as drug diversion – a hospital worker stealing drugs and tainting syringes later used on patients.

NHPR Staff

Medical technicians would have to register with the state under a bill passed Wednesday by the New Hampshire House. The measure was prompted by an outbreak of Hepatitis C at Exeter Hospital, where an employee reused needles on patients resulting in 32 infections. The employee had been accused of drug diversion at similar hospitals but continued to gain employment.


The criminal case of a traveling medical technician who infected dozens of patients with hepatitis C through tainted syringes is pushing individual hospitals, state lawmakers and federal officials to close the loopholes he exploited.

Kwiatkowski Sentenced To 39 Years In Prison

Dec 2, 2013

More than a year and a half after an outbreak of Hepatitis C at Exeter Hospital first emerged, a traveling medical technician has been sentenced to nearly four decades in federal prison. 

David Kwiatkowski, his hair trimmed short, looked heavier than at his last court appearance in August, when he pleaded guilty to 16 federal charges.

For nearly a decade, the defendant admits he routinely stole syringes of powerful pain medication. He would inject himself, and then reuse those needles on patients.

Exeter Hospital Employees Treated For Scabies

Oct 3, 2013
NHPR Staff

New Hampshire's Exeter Hospital says 33 employees are being treated for scabies after contracting it from a patient at the hospital.

About 300 more staff members are being treated as a precaution, but have not shown symptoms of scabies, a contagious skin condition caused by mites.

The hospital also said it is going to notify 165 patients about a possible exposure.

The hospital said it reported the exposure to state officials on Sept. 27.

U.S. Attorney's Office


David Kwiatkowski entered the federal courtroom in shackles, wearing a Strafford County Department of Corrections jumpsuit. The 34-year defendant looked heavier than last July, when he was arrested on 14 federal charges, including tampering with a consumer product and obtaining a controlled substance by fraud.

When asked by the judge why he changed his plea, the clean shaven Kwiatkowski said, “Because I’m guilty.”

A former hospital employee charged with spreading Hepatitis C in New Hampshire and seven other states is pleading guilty to federal charges.  

34-year old David Kwiatkowski was arrested last July for stealing syringes filled with fentanyl, a powerful pain medication. Officials say he would inject himself and then reuse the needles on patients inside Exeter Hospital, infecting at least 32 people with Hepatitis C.

Facing 14 federal charges including tampering with a consumer product and illegally obtaining controlled substances, Kwiatkowski is changing his plea to guilty. 

State public health officials today released their final report looking into the outbreak of Hepatitis C at Exeter Hospital. The document provides new information into just what took place inside the hospital’s cardiac catheterization lab, where a former employee stands accused of stealing narcotics and returning tainted needles. 

NHPR’s Todd Bookman tells All Things Considered Host Brady Carlson about the important new information in the case.

State public health officials say another person has tested positive for Hepatitis C stemming from last year’s outbreak at Exeter Hospital. 

That brings the total number to 33.

A former hospital employee was arrested last July in connection with the spread of the virus inside the cardiac catheterization lab. Prosecutors say David Kwiatkowski reused syringes on patients after injecting himself with powerful pain killers.

Dr. Jose Montero, the state’s public health director, says it appears this latest case, though, is from sexual contact.

Kwiatkowski Pleads Not Guilty In Hep C Case

Dec 3, 2012

The former Exeter Hospital employee at the center of a Hepatitis C outbreak pleaded ‘not-guilty’ in Federal court today.

Prosecutor: Still More Work To Do In Hep C Case

Nov 29, 2012

Federal prosecutors say it could take a year or more before a trial in the Hepatitis C outbreak case begins. On Wednesday, a grand jury indicted 33-year old David Kwiatkowski on 14 charges, including tampering with a consumer product.

The former Exeter Hospital employee is accused of stealing syringes of a powerful pain medication, injecting himself, and then reusing the needles on patients.

U.S. Attorney John Kacavas says the FBI and members of law enforcement continue to investigate the case.

Indictment Arrives For Hepatitis C Suspect

Nov 28, 2012

A former hospital employee at the center of a Hepatitis C outbreak in New Hampshire is facing new federal charges.

CDC Social Media / Flickr

A judge heard arguments today in a case involving patient medical records at Exeter Hospital. At issue is just how much access the state needs to investigate an outbreak of Hepatitis C.

Back in August, Exeter Hospital filed a protective order arguing the state’s broad request for patient records violates both state and federal privacy laws.

In Merrimack Superior court, lawyers for the State countered, saying they have a duty to investigate exactly what happened inside the hospital, and that means they need complete access.

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/sskennel/4526014600/">SSkennel</a> / Flickr

In a press conference at Exeter Hospital today, lawyers called the state’s request for broad access to medical records a government overreach. The state continues to investigate the Hepatitis C outbreak.

In August, Exeter Hospital filed a protective order in Merrimack Superior Court. It’s seeking to block the state’s request for broad access to patient medical records.

State officials investigating the outbreak of Hepatitis C at Exeter Hospital continue pressing for access to patient medical records.

In August, the hospital went to court seeking a protective order, arguing that the Division of Public Health Services’ broad request for records violates both state and federal privacy laws.

Today, the state filed its response in Merrimack Superior Court. It says that healthcare providers are required to share information during a public health investigation.

Privacy Concerns Enter Exeter Hospital Investigation

Aug 30, 2012

Patient privacy has become the latest front in the Hepatitis C outbreak at Exeter Hospital.

As part of their ongoing investigation, the State’s Division of Public Health is seeking access to the private health records of Exeter patients. But the Hospital says the request violates privacy laws, and is asking the courts to intervene.

Testing Continues as Hepatitis C Outbreak Grows

Aug 23, 2012

More than 1,200 patients potentially exposed to the outbreak of Hepatitis C at Exeter Hospital were tested at public clinics last week, according to officials at Health and Human Services.

Anyone who received treatment in Exeter’s intensive care unit or operating rooms between April, 2011 and May of this year has been asked to get tested.

Former employee David Kwiatkowski is accused of reusing syringes of pain medication at the hospital during that time period.

So far, 32 patients have tested positive for matching strains of the blood-borne virus.

The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services announced Wednesday the confirmation of another patient infected with Hepatitis C while receiving treatment at Exeter Hospital.

This new case, confirmed by the Department of Public Health Services, brings the total number of infected up to 33. That includes David Kwiatkowski, the former hospital employee charged with stealing drugs and refilling the used syringes with saline solution. They were later reused on patients.

CDC Social Media / Flickr

Exeter Hospital is expanding its testing clinics to a third day, in its effort to explore the scope of the Hepatitis C outbreak.

The hospital where the Hepatitis C outbreak began is now offering testing from seven in the morning to six at night, Monday and Tuesday, and from seven to noon on Wednesday. The state is also offering free clinics through August eighteenth.

The state declared a public  health incident ahead of the clinics as more than three thousand people were sent letters recommending they get tested.

Sam Evans-Brown

The Department of Health and Human Services has revised its plan for testing patients who were exposed to the Hepatitis C outbreak at Exeter Hospital.

DHHS says that during the past week the estimated number of patients who might have been exposed to Hepatitis C has been reduced to around 3,300, because many of the names on the list were repeats. They say in the new plan to test those patients there are 4 locations: in Stratham, Plaistown, Manchester and Rochester starting August 10th.  

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/sskennel/4526014600/">SSkennel</a> / Flickr

The investigation continues into the Hepatitis C outbreak at Exeter Hospital is moving to several other states. This week officials at a hospital in Poughkeepsie, New York, are testing about 25 patients who underwent procedures at the time technician David Kwiatowski worked there.

6,000 More Need Testing in Hepatitis C Outbreak

Jul 24, 2012

Public Health officials have announced that approximately 6,000 more patients of Exeter Hospital need to be tested for Hepatitis C. Anyone who had inpatient surgery or treatment in the ICU between April, 2011 and May, 2012 are encouraged to attend a testing clinic at Exeter High School this weekend.

Last week, 32-year old David Kwiatkowski was charged with stealing syringes of pain medication before  reusing them on patients in the Cardiac Catheterization Lab, where we has employed as a medical technician.

More details are emerging today about the former Exeter Hospital employee who has been charged in connection with the Hepatitis C outbreak. Thirty patients have tested positive for a strain of the virus that matches that of 32-year old David Kwiatowski. He’s been accused of stealing syringes of pain medication, injecting himself and then returning the needles. He’s facing federal charges of tampering and acquiring a controlled substance by fraud.

The U.S. Attorney’s office today announced the first criminal charges in connection with the Hepatitis C outbreak at Exeter Hospital.

On Thursday, the Department of Justice announced the arrest of David Kwiatowski. The 32-year old was arrested at a Massachusetts hospital, where he is receiving treatment for an undisclosed medical condition. US Attorney John Kacavas says the charges include tampering with a consumer product and obtaining a controlled substance by fraud.

“What we’ve been able to uncover is evidence that this defendant was diverting Fentanyl, at the least and perhaps other drugs as well.”

Hospitals Go High Tech to Secure Drugs

Jul 16, 2012
Todd Bookman / NHPR

Denis Fortier is Director of Pharmacy at Cheshire Medical Center in Keene. When he started in the field 30 years ago, that job involved loading carts with Dixie cups full of prescriptions.

Hepatitis C Outbreak Continues to Grow

Jul 12, 2012
<a href="http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Hepatocellular_carcinoma_histopathology_%281%29.jpg">Wikimedia / Commons

Four more cases of hepatitis C have been confirmed stemming from an outbreak at Exeter Hospital’s Cardiac Catheterization Lab. That brings the total to 31 infections, including one hospital employee.

The Division of Public Health Services is asking all patients who received services between October, 2010 and May, 2012 to get tested for the liver-destroying virus.