March 14th, 2013
Bonnie Brunson, a nurse from Las Vegas, gave an emotional testimony during a civil suit hearing in Clark County courtroom last week. Bonnie was one of many victims who were infected with the hepatitis C virus at an endoscopy clinic in 2005, which Attorney Robert Eglet has described as “the largest hepatitis C outbreak in US history.”
The infections were allegedly caused by Dr Dipak Desai, who has been accused of “routinely engaging in potentially dangerous practices.”
Brunson is suing the health insurer Health Plan of Nevada (HPN), claiming that HPN had ignored evidence that Dr Desai was putting patients at risk.
In her testimony, Brunson, who was diagnosed three years before the link between infections and the endoscopy clinic were discovered, said that the diagnosis was a source of shame, that she shut herself away from people and became “a hermit.”
Bonnie spoke about her experiences of receiving treatment for hep C and the harsh side effects, including severe headaches, nausea, insomnia, aching bones, itching and welts on her skin.
Although she is now clear of the disease, she still has to be tested every year to ensure the virus has not returned.
Her husband, Carl Brunson, also took to the stand, saying that the couple became social outcasts as long-term friends abandoned them.
HPN began their making their defence case this week, with their lawyers arguing that Dr Desai is to blame for the infections.
Desai denies any wrongdoing and faces trial later this year in on separate state and federal criminal charges.
Photo by AP Images