VA Reopens Surgical Unit

ST. LOUIS (AP)  – Veterans Administration officials say surgeries at its St. Louis medical center are resuming after being shut down for more than a month after spots were found on surgical trays.

Officials say the John Cochran VA Medical Center’s surgical unit reopened Thursday after independent observers signed off on its safety.

The hospital suspended surgeries Feb. 2 after surgical trays were found to be pitted with corrosion, raising questions about sterilization.

The hospital performs procedures for cataracts, hernias, orthopedic problems and general surgeries, along with high-tech robotic removals of cancerous prostate glands.

The VA says its experts, along with private vendors and independent consultants, investigated why the trays were corroding.

No single source of the problem was found. The VA says it brought in thousands of new instruments as replacements.

Copyright Associated Press

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