Public Health

57 Patients May Be Affected by Boston Paramedic's Drug-Tampering

Though health officials aren't exactly sure what happened.

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Boston health officials over the weekend began notifying 57 people who, they say, may have been exposed to blood-borne illnesses in the summer of 2011 when they were treated by a city ambulance paramedic now believed to have tampered with vials of painkillers and sedatives.

The telephone calls to potential victims will be followed up Monday with letters offering free medical tests to determine if they were exposed to infectious diseases.

The paramedic, who officials declined to identify, is believed to have tampered with the powerful drugs during a six-week period in the summer of 2011, but officials said they could not be more specific about the exact dates because of an ongoing criminal investigation. No charges have been filed against the paramedic.