ORMC blames equipment malfunction for film found on surgical trays

Posted: Updated:
WALLKILL -

Orange Regional Medical Center says an "equipment malfunction" was to blame for a film found on its surgical trays that forced some patients to postpone procedures or go elsewhere.

"We had some sort of event in our sterilization system that we believe was caused by our water supply," says Orange Regional Medical Center CEO Scott Batulis.

Batulis says a non-hazardous film found to be "aluminum oxide" was discovered Thursday on sanitized surgical trays. As a result, the hospital suspended non-emergency surgeries and began tests.

"As soon as that happened we shut down the ORs and we shut down surgery out of safety for patients," says Batulis.

Both Batulis and Town of Wallkill Supervisor Ed Diana say the first thing looked at was the water supply. While the exact cause is still unknown, the hospital installed a new water filtration system for its sterilization processing and has either refurbished or replaced all its equipment to fix the problem.
ORMC says surgical equipment is thoroughly inspected before each procedure and that at no time has patient safety been jeopardized by the sterilization issue. 

News 12 is told the issue is now resolved, but the hospital says it won't be fully operational until sometime next week. 

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