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Harbor-UCLA Medical Center cited for safety violations

The Los Angeles Times, November 1, 2011

Harbor-UCLA Medical Center has failed to keep its operating rooms clean and safe and to protect its patients from possible infection, according to federal inspection reports recently released to The Times. Inspectors found rooms that had holes in the ceilings or that were dusty and cluttered. Operating rooms were kept at the wrong humidity level, which can lead to the spread of germs, the reports said. Hospital staff members also weren't washing their hands according to policy. "The hospital failed to maintain a sanitary environment for the provision of surgical services," the reports said. The infection control problems found at the county-run hospital earlier this year were so serious that the federal government sent a letter this summer threatening to revoke Medicare funding, a move that could financially destroy the institution.