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LA Hospital Closes Units After Infection Outbreak

The pediatrics and neonatal intensive care units at White Memorial Hospital Center in Los Angeles have closed down after a potentially deadly infection sickened seven children, possibly killing one newborn, officials said.

The outbreak of the bacterium Pseudomonas aeruginosa is said to have infected five babies since Nov. 30, when the germ was detected. Currently, all seriously ill children will be taken into isolation, stabilized, and transferred to nearby hospitals.

Cause of the Hospital Infection

According to officials, the source of the infection may have been caused by an improperly sterilized medical instrument, namely a blade used to check a baby’s larynx. The hospital’s chief medical officer Dr. Rosalio Lopez said there is currently no danger posed to other children.

Every year in the United States, thousand of people suffer severe injury and death as a result of medical mistakes made by negligent healthcare professionals.

Not properly cleaning medical instruments can lead to an infection outbreak such as the one in the Los Angeles hospital causing potentially devastating consequences.

The hospital is cooperating with state, federal, and county health officials to further explore the outbreak as well as reviewing its guidelines for controlling such infections.

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