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Surgeries could resume today at St. B

Posted: 01/31/2014 1:00 AM | Comments: 0

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OFFICIALS remained hopeful Thursday surgery could resume in at least some of St. Boniface Hospital's 14 operating rooms today.

Bronwyn Penner-Holigroski, a spokeswoman for the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority, said she had nothing definitive to report as of late Thursday afternoon.

"We are still hopeful" about the Friday timeline, she said, adding the situation is fluid.

Hospital officials will meet this morning to discuss ongoing preparations to have the operating rooms brought back into service. The ORs have been down since early last Wednesday morning, when heating and ventilation systems failed and cold air got inside, causing heating coils to freeze and crack.

The resulting water damage was confined mainly to hallways and scrub room areas adjacent to the operating rooms. Only two ORs sustained flood damage.

By Monday, the 26 coils that burst had been repaired and damaged drywall and ceiling tiles had been replaced.

The next stage was to clean up the affected areas and ensure the heating and ventilation systems were operating properly and it was safe to resume surgeries.

As of early this week, hospital officials had yet to pinpoint the cause of the heat and ventilation system breakdown. They said multiple systems failed, including pumps that circulate fluid through the coils.

The WRHA projected earlier in the week more than 200 elective or scheduled surgeries at St. Boniface would be postponed by the end of this week.

-- Larry Kusch

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition January 31, 2014 B2

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