Seattle hospital closes main operating rooms for air quality

Found deficiencies after bringing in outside industrial hygienists to assess air quality.

Associated Press

SEATTLE — Seattle Children’s Hospital has closed its main operating rooms as it removes mold detected in its facilities months ago.

The Seattle Times reported that the hospital detected traces of Aspergillus mold in several operating and equipment storage rooms in May.

Seattle Children’s spokeswoman Kathryn Mueller said the hospital initially only shut down four operating rooms but has since closed off the other 10.

She said the risk to surgical patients is “very low,” but the hospital has contacted all patients who may have been exposed.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says Aspergillus mold can live indoors or outside. Most people breathe it daily without getting sick.

But people with weakened immune systems are at a higher risk of developing infections in the lungs or sinuses from the mold.

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