TAMPA, FL — Insufficient measures to guard against mold contaminated dust and airborne particles moving into patient rooms during a renovation project is being blamed for the death of three children, according to the St. Petersburg Times.
Having immune systems severely weakened by cancer, Mathew Gliddon, Sierra Kesler and Kaylie Gunn-Rimes all died within a month of one another, allegedly from complications attributed to mold exposure; the parents of the children are suing the hospital for negligence, the story stated.
St. Joseph''s spokeswoman Lisa Patterson said: "Anytime we do any kind of construction we follow all the necessary precautions. Obviously, patient safety is the top priority for the children''s hospital."
An autopsy showed that Mathew Gliddon''s death was caused by chemotherapy and a fungi infection. Sierra Kesler''s autopsy listed the cause of death as fungal pneumonia with underlying leukemia. Kaylie Gunn-Rimes developed a lung infection caused by mold, the story noted.
The hospital spokeswoman said that St. Joseph''s has an infection control team that works to ensure a clean and healthy environment; hospital procedure includes preventive maintenance rounds and measuring air quality, the story added.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 2 million infections from a variety of causes are acquired each year in health care settings, resulting in 90,000 deaths.
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