Healthcare News & Insights

Dirty endoscope puts 75 patients at risk

An endoscope that wasn’t properly disinfected was used on 75 patients — and now they’re being asked to return to the hospital to ensure they haven’t contracted hepatitis or another infection. The incident took place at St. Clair Hospital in Mt. Lebanon, Pennsylvania. The endoscope in question was a rarely used two-channel scope, which was cleaned weekly whether or not it had been used. After a staffer noticed a spot on the instrument, it was discovered the scope was missing a tube needed to properly disinfect all areas of the device.

The hospital notified all patients potentially affected by the problem to come in for tests to ensure they haven’t been infected. The good news is, the risk of infection is very small.

The endoscope isn’t currently being used at the hospital, and won’t be returned to service until the missing part is acquired and staffers have been retrained on how to properly clean the device.

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