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The World in Medicine
February 14, 2001

British Hospitals Attack CJD Risk

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JAMA. 2001;285(6):725. doi:10.1001/jama.285.6.725-JWM10001-4-1

British health officials announced last month that the government will give hospitals £200 million (about US $300 million) to take steps to reduce the risk of transmitting variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD).

The funds were allocated to enable hospitals to buy new sterilization and decontamination equipment. The government has also directed hospitals to perform all tonsillectomies with disposable, single-use surgical instruments, at an annual estimated cost of £25 million. Tonsils, as well as the appendix and certain other tissues, are known to be reservoirs for prions in people infected with vCJD.

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