Seattle Children’s hospital this week notified about 100 patients they may be at risk for infection from colonoscopy equipment that had not been properly cleaned.
“The risk of infection for patients is very low, but we don’t want to take any chances,” Dr. Danielle Zerr, the hospital’s medical director for infection prevention, said in a statement this morning.
The patients have been offered free blood tests to screen for infectious diseases such as hepatitis B and C and HIV.
The cleaning-process lapse was discovered in early November and involved two auxiliary channel scopes, Children’s said in today’s statement. The scopes, which differ from the standard scopes, have a special channel that requires extra attention. The hospital found that technicians weren’t sufficiently trained on cleaning procedures, which led to the scopes being used again before they were ready, according to the statement.
“We take this type of situation very seriously and launched an investigation as soon as we discovered the problem,” Zerr said.
Parents or patients who have questions can call the hospitals’ scope-information line at 206-987-5193.