Precautionary Elective Surgery Moratorium Continues from Granular Particles Found in Trays

Updated 1 year ago Edited by Tony Rutherford from Multiple Reports

Cabell Huntington Hospital has  extended the suspension of  elective surgeries at its main operating room, labor and delivery bay, endoscopy suites and its surgery suite after the Jan. 30  discovery of "granular particles" on a small number of sterile trays.

Vice President for Strategic Marketing, Planning and Business Development Lisa Chamberlain said none of the  trays were used in procedures.

Higher micron water filters have been delivered for installation. The new filtration process should prevent water supply sediment from reaching sterilization equipment. 

"We sincerely apologize for the inconvenience. We wish to assure all patients, physicians and staff that safety and quality remain our top priorities," said  Chamberlin in a Jan. 31 release. 

No date has been set for resumption of elective surgery as the hospital continues tray and equipment examinization,  "flushing"  the water systems,  and inspecting washing and sterilization equipment, Chamberlain said.

Incidentally, Aspen Valley Hospital in Colorado also stopped all surgeries  Jan. 25 after its  steam sterilization system was compromised, the Aspen Times reported on Jan. 29.

David Ressler, Aspen Valley Hospital CEO, explained, "We started noticing some moisture in our surgical packs. We have very tight monitoring in place for moisture content, and if it is slightly elevated, we can't have moisture in a sterilized pack. We immediately suspended any surgeries using those packs. We couldn't put them into our inventory and we decided to suspend surgeries in general."

In laymen's terms, the steam at Aspen has too much water in it. 

Ressler said, "Our engineers deal with this all over the country." 

CHH has not stated their  operating room  sediment issue stems from steam.


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