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Another Seattle hospital patient infected with mushrooms in operating theaters



A surgical patient at the Seattle Children's Hospital fell ill with a fungal infection found in three operating rooms, and confirmed the hospital's campus areas in Seattle on Tuesday, marking a new chapter in the fight against fungal infections in the well-known Children's Hospital of the region.

The closure of the contaminated rooms will take place about four months this week after all the operating theaters in the hospital have been reopened with problems with Aspergillus. How long the rooms will be closed after the last tests is not clear yet.

Since July 4, the day of reopening after the., Tests on Aspergillus are carried out at the operating rooms and the connected areas at least once a week earlier infections. These tests will continue, the children's spokeswoman Kathryn Mueller said in an e-mail.

Three more patients became ill with the fungus in Seattle this year after three patients became infected in 201

8. One of these patients died last spring.

Children monitor a second patient who may also be suffering from aspergillosis, the disease caused by the mold. Patients are usually infected if dust is whirled up during renovation or hospital construction or through contaminated biomedical equipment.

Hospital officials monitor other patients who are classified as being at risk of infection based on the latest test results, Müller said, although they did not tell me how many patients were being monitored or how many people might have been exposed.

About 3,000 patients and their families were notified when the operating rooms closed in May.

Planned operations could be canceled, postponed or performed at other hospitals in the area, including the UW Medical Center, the Harborview Medical Center, the Children's Bellevue Campus and the Mary Bridge Children's Hospital in Tacoma. Some operations could be done in other parts of the Seattle campus, Müller said.

Aspergillus is a common mold that occurs outdoors and indoors, allowing people to breathe daily without getting sick, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. People with lung diseases or weakened immune systems, especially patients with organ transplants or stem cell transplants, are at a higher risk for the development of aspergillosis, which can be mild to severe and manifests as an allergic reaction or infection of the lungs and other organs.

Children's fight against Aspergillus began in 2018. Two operating theaters and one equipment room were closed for three days in June last year after testing found that Aspergillus spores and surgical patients contracted in the spring of 2018. Children entered the mold problem in July 2018 at the Ministry of Health (DOH). The problem in 2018 was probably due to the configuration of the operating theaters, while the problems this year were attributed to a gap in the arrangement of small air filters in a hospital Mark Del Baccaro, chief pediatrician, said in an interview in August ,

Despite thorough cleaning of the operating theaters and efforts to close gaps, Aspergillus returned this year when mold spores were found during tests on May 18th. Subsequently, the hospital closed four operating theaters. On May 24, the hospital shut down the remaining 10 operating theaters.

State inspectors carried out a local visit on May 30 and issued a statement of deficiency based on this visit to the hospital. Children made a plan on June 27th to remedy these shortcomings. The state conducted a surprise inspection on August 7, approving Children's plans to correct the problem. punctual filtering of the ventilation systems.

State-identified deficiencies jeopardize the hospital's involvement in the federal program of Medicare and Medicaid Centers (CMS) for patients using Medicare and Medicaid, but CMS decided not to withdraw from the hospital.


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