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Blood sugar test goes bad at event

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Medical students failed to properly change needles on devices used for blood glucose testing

By Susan M. Bryan

ALBUQUERQUE — A group of New Mexico medical school students failed to properly change needles on devices used for blood glucose testing and now officials say a few dozen people might be at risk for contracting serious diseases.

University of New Mexico School of Medicine officials made the announcement Thursday, hoping they can locate those who participated in the free testing April 24 at the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center in Albuquerque. Between 51 and 55 people were tested that day.

“Basically you’ve got the students who were trying to do something good and just didn’t go about it the right way,” said Sam Giammo, a spokesman for UNM’s Health Sciences Center.

Students from UNM’s physician assistant program conducted the free blood sugar tests during the

cultural center’s American Indian Week Pueblo Days. The center’s visitor list for that Saturday included more than 1,600 people from across the nation and abroad — including Canada, Italy, Sweden and Germany.

Tazbah McCullah, a spokeswoman for the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center, pointed to the high rate of diabetes among American Indians, saying the students had in their minds that they were trying to help.


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