Stanton Territorial Hospital is experiencing some equipment malfunctions with its sterilization services.
The Health and Social Services Authority (NTHSSA) says in a press release, the malfunctions were due to wet packs — moisture left after the sterilization process.
“This issue was flagged immediately and that no improperly sterilized equipment was used on patients,” says the NTHSSA.
Also, some supplies were contaminated by a water leak that occurred alongside the sterilizer and the investigation to find the cause is still ongoing.
The NTHSSA is currently looking at options to sterilize equipment at other facilities in the NWT and has contingency options in place for emergency situations.
As a result, the Stanton Territorial Hospital has suspended and canceled “a small number of elective surgeries”, as stated in a press release. Surgeries scheduled immediately will move forward depending on equipment availability, with a priority put on patients traveling to Yellowknife. Non-emergency procedures may be deferred to other facilities within NWT or Alberta. Patients cancelations are still on-going.
The sterile supplies that remain are being saved to maintain emergency surgery capacity, and once the sterilization issue is resolved, elective surgical procedures may resume; those impacted by cancellations will be rescheduled as high-priority.
CKLB radio has reached out to the GNWT for a comment regarding the sterilization equipment investigation and the contingency plan moving forward.