Move made to ensure safety when after broad investigation and upgrades, employees again reported symptoms
Vermont Business Magazine On November 17, UVM Medical Center will close its operating rooms located on the Fanny Allen campus. As it was previously, the decision was made out of an abundance of caution for patient and staff safety after staff members reported symptoms including dizziness and nausea, and some employees once again reported an odor in the area of the operating rooms even after extensive investigation and upgrades.
All employees who experienced symptoms since last fall have been treated and recovered, and patients have not reported symptoms at any time. Air quality data continues to be normal, and has been within normal and safe levels during each incident.
“This announcement is incredibly frustrating, both for the staff and patients at Fanny Allen, and all the people who have worked so hard to remedy the situation,” said Stephen Leffler, MD, President and COO of the UVM Medical Center. “While this was a difficult decision to make, especially in a year that has brought with it one crisis after another, the incidents have caused real anxiety for our employees and we believe this is the right decision.”
Unless the organization is able to determine a cause that can be clearly addressed, staff and patients will not return to the operating room or inpatient rehab spaces. However, at no time have the outpatient rehab, urgent care or COVID-19 testing areas been affected. They will continue operating at the Fanny Allen campus.
Because the surgery schedule at UVM Medical Center’s main campus has been scaled back due to the cyberattack and COVID-19, most cases will be accommodated there in the coming weeks. UVM Health Network partner hospitals may also be able to accommodate some patients, as they have done before.
“At this point, words can’t adequately convey how grateful I am to our staff for their incredible dedication to our mission, and to our patients for their understanding,” Leffler said.
About the University of Vermont Medical Center
The University of Vermont Medical Center is a 499-bed tertiary care regional referral center providing advanced care to approximately 1 million residents in Vermont and northern New York. Together with our partners at the Larner College of Medicine at the University of Vermont and the College of Nursing and Health Sciences, we are Vermont’s academic medical center. The University of Vermont Medical Center also serves as a community hospital for approximately 150,000 residents in Chittenden and Grand Isle counties.
The University of Vermont Medical Center is a member of The University of Vermont Health Network.
Source: BURLINGTON (VT) – UVM Medical Center 11.12.2020