This past week the news media has covered a story in which thousands of patients receiving care at an oral and maxillofacial surgeon’s office may have been exposed to blood borne pathogens such as human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and hepatitis. Unfortunately, this is not the first time this type of event has occurred. You may recall the reporting last year of contaminated medications injected into patients resulting in meningitis or the multiple cases of disease transmission from an outpatient endoscopy center.
The most common causes of these events are the use of contaminated medications, syringes, or surgical instruments. Lack of oversight, greed, and poor operating systems may be contributing factors. At Pacific Oral and Facial Surgery Center, we are very serious about disease transmission and your safety. Syringes and needles are NEVER reused. Intravenous fluids and intravenous tubing are single use and disposed of after EACH patient. All instruments are steam autoclaved prior to being used in surgery and our sterilization efficacy is monitored by a third party laboratory.
As a board certifed oral and maxillofacial surgeon and general anesthesia examiner for the state of California, I consider it your RIGHT as a patient to know what procedures and methods are in place to ensure your safety and your family’s safety in any health care setting. If something does not seem right when you are at the hospital or doctor’s office speak up and say something.
At our centers in Tracy and Livermore you are encouraged to ask questions regarding you and your family’s safety. You are also welcome to tour our facility during your consultation. As alway your health and well being our our greatest priorites.