Porter Adventist Hospital pauses all surgeries

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DENVER -- Porter Adventist Hospital paused all surgeries because of a potential change in water quality, it announced late Thursday night.

"We are working closely with patients to reschedule surgeries, and we are supporting them through this process," the hospital said in a statement.

"We notified the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment and they conducted a site visit this afternoon.

"We remain committed to maintaining the highest standards of patient care. We understand that this information may cause concern, and are working closely with our patient care team, doctors and staff to ensure any patients involved have the information and resources they need," Thursday night's statement said.

There is no word on when surgeries will resume.

The move comes one day after the announcement that an infection control breach might have impacted people who had orthopedic or spine surgery at the hospital between July 21, 2016 and Feb. 20, 2018.

The patients might have been put at risk for surgical site infections or for hepatitis B, hepatitis C or HIV, according to the CDPHE.

The department became aware of the issue after the process for cleaning surgical instruments after orthopedic and spine surgeries was found to be inadequate -- which might have compromised the sterilization of the tools.

CDPHE said it is not aware of any patient infections but said the risk of getting any of the diseases is considered low.

The hospital replaced all surgical equipment in question on Feb. 20 and there is no risk to current patients.

Patients who might have been at risk were mailed letters by the hospital on Wednesday and can contact the hospital for more information.

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