Hospital closes some ORs after tests show mold; surgeries continue in other spaces — 5 details

Seattle Children's Hospital closed several operating rooms after air tests revealed low levels of mold in early May, according to MYNorthwest and KIRO Radio.

Five things to know:

1. The routine air tests detected "very low levels of Aspergillus versicolor spores" in multiple operating rooms and a storage room, a spokesperson told KIRO Radio. There were also "unexpected air pressure findings."

2. Seattle Children's reported the findings May 12 to the state health department. Multiple ORs will remain closed while Seattle Children's collaborates with external engineers to evaluate affected spaces.

3. Surgeries continue to be performed at the hospital's main campus, as well as at its Bellevue (Wash.) Clinic and Surgery Center.

4. Tests haven't found any indication of Aspergillus fumigatus spores, the strain linked to 14 surgical site infections at Seattle Children's since 2001. Half of the patients who contracted Aspergillus infections died.

5. Seattle Children's temporarily closed 10 ORs in 2019 to install an air handling system on the rooftop and equip rooms with HEPA filtration systems. The ORs reopened in February with continuous monitoring and testing.

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